Center for Studying Health System Change

Providing Insights that Contribute to Better Health Policy


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Paul B. Ginsburg


Jeremy D. Pickreign


Health Spending:

January/February 1999
Health Affairs

Tracking Health Care Costs:

November 1999
Issue Brief No. 23

Health Care Costs:

June 1997
Issue Brief No. 10

Tracking Health Care Costs:

January 1997
Issue Brief No. 06

A Primer on Understanding Health Care Cost Trends:

December 1996
Issue Brief No. 05

Despite Fears, Costs Rise Only Modestly in 1998

Fall 1998
Data Bulletin No. 13

Tracking Health Care Costs:

September/October 1998
Health Affairs

Tracking Health Care Costs:

July/August 1997
Health Affairs

Health System Change:

Winter 1995
Health Affairs

Tracking Health Care Costs

Fall 1996
Health Affairs, vol.15, no.3 (Fall 1996): 140-149
Paul B. Ginsburg, Jeremy D. Pickreign

Rates of increase in health care costs have fallen throughout the 1990s, especially in fee-for-service plans. This article attempts to shed light on cost trends and their relevance to policy - a difficult task because information on trends comes from a number of inconsistent sources and the relevant measure of cost depends on the questions being asked. Policy issues, as well as their relevant adjustment measures, include the degree of progress in controlling costs and how Medicare will be financed in the future. Three types of data were used to develop cost trends: health care provider revenue and costs; insurance claims; and employer-paid premiums.

Free access to this article is available at the Health Affairs Web site.


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The Center for Studying Health System Change Ceased operation on Dec. 31, 2013.