Government Health Insurance Programs Cost More Than Private Insurance, But the Cost of Private Insurance is Rising Faster
Adjusted for inflation, private health insurance cost per person has increased in all but one year since 1988, while per-person costs of Medicare and Medicaid have plateaued. Since 2006, Medicare costs per person have increased annually by an average of 0.6%, Medicaid costs per person have decreased by 0.2%, but private insurance costs per person have increased by an annual average of 2.6% (Fig. 81). Direct-purchase insurance purchases fell as a percent of total health insurance in 2017, for the first time since the Affordable Care Act was signed into law in 2010. The uninsured rate remained the same between 2016 and 2017.