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VITALS

What We Pay for Healing

September 29, 1997

Number of Americans in managed health care in 1992: 93 million; in 1996: 160 million.

* Share of income spent for health care by households under 65: 3.7%; households 65 and older: 11.9%.

* Percentage of full-time workers in the U.S. without health insurance: 12%; in California: 17%; in Los Angeles County: 26%.

* Medicare beneficiaries in 1997: 38 million.

* Beneficiaries in 2017: 56 million.

* Average Medicare outlays per beneficiary: $4,963 a year; for the sickest 10%: $36,960 a year.

* Medicare's biggest source of outlays for a medical treatment: $5 billion a year for coronary bypass surgery.

* Lifetime Medicare taxes and premium payments for a man turning 65 in 1995: $35,000.

* His lifetime benefits: $75,000.

* Lifetime Medicare taxes and premium payments for a woman turning 65 in 1995: $46,000.

* Her lifetime benefits: $111,000.

Sources: Commonwealth Fund; U.S. Health Care Financing Administration.

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