The Peterson-KFF Health System Tracker provides clear, up-to-date information on trends, drivers and issues that impact the performance of the system. It also illustrates how the U.S. is performing relative to other countries and how different parts of the system are performing relative to one another. A partnership of the Peterson Center on Healthcare and the KFF, the Tracker’s work goal places a heavy emphasis on data and evidence, addressing key questions through collections of charts, which provide data with additional context and synthesis of the latest research and developments. The Tracker also provide regular insight briefs for a more in-depth look at topical questions.

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How Affordability of Health Care Varies by Income among People with Employer Coverage

This analysis for the Peterson-Kaiser Health System Tracker uses information from the Current Population Survey to look at the average amounts and the shares of family income people in working families with employer-based coverage pay out-of-pocket toward their premiums and direct payments for medical care. It finds that lower income families spend a greater share of their income on health costs than those with higher incomes, and that health status of family members is associated with higher out-of-pocket expenses. 

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An Examination of Surprise Medical Bills and Proposals to Protect Consumers from Them

This analysis examines how often patients get hit with surprise medical bills, what circumstances tend to give rise to them and what proposals are being considered to protect consumers from this problem.

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Urban and Rural Differences in Coronavirus Pandemic Preparedness

The coronavirus outbreak has hit densely populated urban areas of the United States first and hardest. Some health systems have experienced surges of patients, raising concerns that there are not enough hospital beds, staffing, and equipment. The novel coronavirus was slower to spread to rural areas in the U.S., but…

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What Drives Health Spending in the U.S. Compared to Other Countries

A new issue brief looks at the drivers of health spending in the U.S., and key differences between the U.S. and other large, wealthy nations. The analysis finds that the cost of inpatient and outpatient care (which encompasses primary care, services at clinics and hospitals, surgery care, and more) is…

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Nearly 1 in 10 Health Care Workers Lost Their Job Between February and April, But Health Care Employment Rebounded Slightly in May

A new chart collection explores the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the U.S. health care workforce, and finds that between February and April 2020, nearly 1.5 million health care jobs were lost. While more than 300,000 health services jobs were recovered in May 2020, mainly in dental offices, employment in some…

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How Have Health Care Utilization and Spending Changed So Far During the Coronavirus Pandemic?

This chart collection summarizes what is known so far about how health costs and utilization have changed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Health spending is on track to be somewhat lower in 2020 than in 2019 – the first time that’s happened since the government started tracking it.

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Compared to Peer Countries, the U.S. Had the Highest Rate of Mortality Among People Under Age 65 and Potential Years of Life Lost in 2020 Due to the Pandemic

A new KFF issue brief examines 2020 data on excess mortality – the number of deaths above what is expected in a typical year – and finds that among similarly large and wealthy nations, the United States had the highest premature excess mortality rate in 2020, indicating that younger people…

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Visualizing Health Policy: US Statistics on Surprise Medical Billing

This infographic examines public opinion on surprise medical billing in the United States as part of the Visualizing Health Policy infographic series, produced in partnership with the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

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COVID-19 continues to be a leading cause of death in the U.S. in August 2021

With the rapid uptake in vaccinations in recent months, COVID-19 deaths have fallen sharply. COVID-19 is now the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. This updated analysis looks at the pandemic’s effect on mortality rates.

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