US healthcare cost falls will boost competitiveness

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Rising healthcare costs have been one of the main downward pressures on wage growth in the United States

Impacts

  • Quebec, with a high percentage of over-65s, may see some of the fastest cost increases.
  • Similar markets for medical devices within NAFTA will help the technology sector compete with the EU and Japan.
  • Diverging labour policies could slow this trend; elderly populations will need low-wage home health workers who are often immigrants.

Conclusion

Textual conclusion hereOne of Canada's advantages in recent decades is low healthcare costs compared to the United States. Quebec, for example, has the lowest per capita annual expenditure in North America and borders some of the highest cost US states. As most US working-age healthcare costs are paid by employers, this has placed US firms at a severe disadvantage.

As the Affordable Care Act is implemented, costs may converge. In the United States, medical cost acceleration will be arrested and the aging of the Canadian population will place upwards pressures on expenditures. This will offer an additional boost to a US economy that appears to be the most positive story in a sluggish global economy, though at the expense of a Canadian economy suffering from low energy prices.

References

see INTERNATIONAL: Insurers will shape digital healthcare - October 17, 2014

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