Per-person healthcare spending by race, ethnicity

White Americans have the highest yearly per-person healthcare spending compared to patients of other races, even after considering age and health condition, according to a study published Aug. 17 by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation in Seattle.

The study sought to measure healthcare spending by race and ethnicity to understand patterns in utilization and treatment. It included data from 7.3 million health system visits, admissions and prescriptions captured by Medicare surveys from 2002-16, combined with the insured population and notified case estimates from the National Health Interview Survey from 2002 and 2016. 

In 2016, $2.4 trillion was spent across six types of care included in the study. Below is the average per-person spending for Americans of different races that year:

  • White: $8,141

  • Native American: $7,649

  • Black: $7,361

  • Latinx: $6,025

  • Asian, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander: $4,692

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