Many hospitals have invested heavily in new construction. One reason frequently cited are aging baby boomers. But people only get older one year at a time. Economists who have assessed health demand note that growth is not driven by the aging of the population but by greater intensity of services done to people of a similar age as they get older. In other words, a 70-year-old now gets far more intensive and expensive treatment than a 70-year-old did in the 1980s. A new study from researchers at the Center for Studying Health System Change published in Health Affairs agrees that geographic population trends and technological change will play much more important roles in future demand. But don't worry hospital empire builders: The group's outlook for hospital demand remains bullish.
- see this article from The New York Times