Spending growth in nursing care and continuing care retirement communities is on the rise and expected to continue for at least the next eight years, according to new federal estimates.
The growth rate, which was 3% annually in 2013, will climb to 5.3% by 2026, leading to about $261 billion in yearly expenditures.
Also by 2026, federal, state and local governments are projected to finance 47% of national health spending, up from 45% in 2016, according to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Office of Actuary data released Feb. 14.
Larger numbers of beneficiaries who can enroll and faster growth in utilization will power Medicare to the largest (7.4%) annual growth rate among U.S. health sectors this year. That’s a bit of good news for providers.
However, Medicaid is projected to grow at a 5.8% rate through 2026, slower than previous years.
From 2014 to 2016, Medicaid grew at an 8.3% rate due to expansions through the Affordable Care Act. The program is the largest payer of U.S. long-term care services. Medicare is a distant second.