National health spending for all of 2021 grew by 3.4%, reflecting significant federal government support in response to the COVID-induced recession in 2020 and a lower level of such support in 2021. Taking these support dollars out of both 2020 and 2021 estimates, spending growth from 2020 to 2021 would have been 8.4%, as the economy continued to recover.
With the increased federal government assistance, health spending fell below January 2020 levels only in March 2020. Without this assistance, spending would have remained below January 2020 levels throughout most of 2020 and through February 2021.
Including the federal support, health spending in December 2021 represented 18.8% of GDP; it was 17.8% of GDP if the additional government expenditures are excluded. For all of 2021, health spending represented 18.5% of GDP with the support and would have been 18.1% without it.
Antibiotic Prescriptions Associated With COVID-19 Outpatient Visits Among Medicare Beneficiaries, April 2020 to April 2021
Outpatient Visits for COVID-19 and Associated Antibiotic Prescriptions Among Medicare Beneficiaries Aged 65 Years or Older, by Setting, US, April 2020 to April 2021. The volume of COVID-19 visits differed by setting: emergency department, 525 608 (45.8% of all visits); office, 295 983 (25.3%); telehealth, 260 261 (22.3%); and urgent care, 77 268 (6.6%).
Source: Journal of American Medical Association Network