Home Health Spending to Reach $156 Billion Over Next Decade

National spending on home health care is projected to grow 5.6% in 2015 from last year, and at this pace total expenditures in the sector are poised to reach approximately $156 billion come 2024, according to new data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

In 2015, home health spending could top roughly $86.5 billion, according to the CMS Office of the Actuary, which annually produces projections of health care spending within the National Health Expenditure (NHE) Accounts.

In 2013, the most recent date for which historical NHE data is available, home health expenditures topped approximately $79.8 billion, up 3.4% from the previous year. And the sector is projected to see continued growth each year through 2024, according to the projected NHE numbers.

On average, home health care expenditures are projected to grow by at least 6% each year from 2014 through 2024—a rate that is higher than overall national health care spending.

For 2014-2024, health spending is projected to grow at an average rate of 5.8% per year, rising to $5.4 trillion by 2024, according to the NHE data.

As a result, the health spending share of the U.S. economy is projected to rise from 17.4% in 2013, to 19.6% in 2024.

In the projection period, a number of factors are expected to contribute to faster spending growth, including coverage expansions from the Affordable Care Act, as well as quicker growth in medical care use as a result of the improving U.S. economy and aging population, says a Health Affairs article on the NHE report.

“Ultimately, these longer-lasting factors result in relatively modest projected health spending growth over the next decade, averaging close to 6% per year—compared to the average annual growth of about 9% over the three decades prior to the recession—even during a period when the uninsured population is expected to decline by almost eighteen million,” the article states.

Written by Jason Oliva