Over the last 50 years, real per capital health care spending has increased substantially. Certainly there are multiple reasons for this, but the most obvious one is seldom every mentioned -- that the US has seen huge increases in personal wealth over this period, and unsurprisingly people choose to spend a lot of this extra wealth on their own health and life expectancy. In an age where consumerism is often derided as shallow and trivial, what could be more sensible than spending money on more and better life?The biggest factor which makes current approaches to control costs unworkable is that they don't focus on the most obvious of issues -- consumer shopping behavior.
One issue that does not get enough attention is the prosaic act of shopping. I spend my own money, and I care about price. I spend someone else's money, I don't give a rip.