A Dog In The Healthcare Fight
A brief analysis of health care spending shows that from 1984 to 2006, the rate of growth of health care spending on people versus companion animals grew at a similar rate, and both grew faster than the rate of general economic growth.
Although the growth rates for health care spending on people versus companion animals is similar, the absolute level of spending varies dramatically. From 1984-2006, health care expenditures for humans grew from about $800 billion to about $2.1 trillion. Veterinary expenses grew from about $4.2 billion to about $11.2 billion over the same period.
Veterinary care necessarily involves cost and benefit analysis decisions for most companion animal owners. A RAND health experiment showed that out of pocket costs can affect the level of health spending without changing the actual health outcome for people.