As I cleaned out my e-mail inbox this morning, I came across a couple of interesting items.
USA Today reported:
Although health insurance premiums rose 6.1 percent this year, the lowest rate of increase since 1999, the jump still outpaced inflation and wage growth.
“The average cost of a family plan purchased by employers this year hit a new high, $12,106, according to a detailed annual survey of nearly 2,000 employers by the non-partisan Kaiser Family Foundation, a research group based in Menlo Park, Calif. Individual coverage premiums averaged $4,479,” USA Today reported.
And the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality reports cholesterol-lowering blockbuster drug Lipitor ranked first, at almost $5 billion, in terms on total spending on prescription medicines by adults ages 18 to 64 in 2004. Zocor, a competing cholesterol drug, ranked fourth, at $2.3 billion.
Rounding out the top five were Nexium, at $2.7 billion; Prevacid, at $2.4 billion; and Zoloft, at $1.9 billion. Prevacid and Nexium reduce stomach acid, while Zoloft is an antidepressant.
For children ages 17 and under, the top five drugs were Singulair (asthma, allergies), Concerta (ADHD), Strattera (ADHD), Adderall (ADHD) and Zyrtec (allergies).
Does anyone notice a pattern here?