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Waste in Health Care Identified

The report identifies the most significant drivers of wasteful spending —
including administrative inefficiency, unnecessary treatment, medical errors,
and fraud — and quantifies their cost. It is based on a review of published
research and analyses of proprietary healthcare data.

“The bad news is that an estimated $700 billion is wasted annually. That’s
one-third of the nation’s healthcare bill,” said Robert Kelley, vice president
of healthcare analytics at Thomson Reuters and author of the white paper. “The
good news is that by attacking waste, healthcare costs can be reduced without
adversely affecting the quality of care or access to care.

According to a new report , the U.S. healthcare system wastes between $600 billion and $850 billion annually, categorized as follows:
  • Unnecessary Care: 40%, or $250 billion to $325 billion
  • Fraud: 19%, or $125 billion to $175 billion 
  • Administrative Inefficiency: 17%, or $100 billion to $150 billion 
  • Healthcare Provider Errors: 12%, or $75 billion to $100 billion 
  • Preventable Conditions: 6%, or $25 billion to $50 billion
  • Lack of Care Coordination: 6%, or $25 billion to $50 billion

Source: “WASTE IN THE U.S. HEALTHCARE SYSTEM PEGGED AT $700 BILLION ,” Reuters press release, October 26, 2009, 


November 3, 2009 - Posted by | healthcare, Overuse | ,

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