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Growth slows in health spending

USA Today, September 2, 2010
Health care spending this year has grown at its slowest rate in a half-century, a sign that people are forgoing medical care during the recession, a USA TODAY analysis of government data finds.

Spending on doctors, hospitals, drugs and other medical care climbed at a 2.7% annual rate per person in the first half of 2010, the smallest increase since the Bureau of Economic Analysis began tracking medical care in 1959.

When inflation is taken into account, spending per person actually fell 0.2% in the first six months of the year. That's the first decline since the government began adjusting for inflation in 1995.