As if we need any reminders, it's painfully clear that the U.S. healthcare system continues to grapple with some serious health issues.
Yet another batch of recent reports reaffirms the fact that Americans are paying far too much for their care and health coverage and getting too little quality in return—trends that have been at work for decades.
Last week brought a high-profile report from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research & Educational Trust bearing bad news on health insurance premiums. It showed that costs this year resumed their historic trend line, with increases nearing double-digit territory, after some previous moderation.
According to the report, the average annual premium for individual coverage was about $5,400, or 8% higher than last year, while the premium for family coverage topped $15,000, or 9% higher. The rise in the cost of family coverage in 2010 was only 3%. This year's increases outpaced general inflation and ran far ahead of typical pay raises.