PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — From 2013 to 2019, per-person health care costs in Oregon significantly rose and outpaced the national average, according to a report.
In a report released Tuesday, the Oregon Health Authority said that over those six years health care costs grew by 49%. Meanwhile, Medicare costs and Medicaid costs topped off at an increase of 58% and 32%.
Inflation and wages have reportedly failed to keep up with the rapidly growing health care costs. This trend, which experts say is expected to continue, has forced many Oregonians to spend large chunks of their income on medical services.
“The effects of rising health costs have a direct impact on the well-being of people, families and our communities,” said OHA Director Patrick Allen. “When health care costs grow faster than income and the cost of living, they squeeze the budgets of families and businesses and reduce access to care. It’s important for Oregonians to understand how health costs are growing – and why – so we can take steps in our state to contain them.”
The report detailed the costs of six health care services, which included inpatient care, professional services, outpatient care, pharmacy, emergency department and other. OHA reports pharmacy and emergency department services were hit the hardest by climbing costs, with pharmacy services growing 116% and emergency care 77%. Despite these surges, inpatient care reportedly remains the most expensive service.
OHA noted 2020 and 2021 data was not included in this report, so it’s unclear the direct impacts COVID-19 has had on health care costs.