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HMO Premiums to Zoom Up

Cost of drugs, new technology driving price increases for 50 million Americans

About 50 million Americans insured by health maintenance organizations (HMOs) face premium increases of 16 to 22 percent this year, reports ABC News.

Greater demand for expensive health care and high-priced prescription drugs coupled with costly new technology are driving the increase, says the report.

Spending for prescription drugs alone is expected to double over the next five years in the United States, says this ABC News story. Americans already spend more for drugs than people in any other country, reports this HealthDay story.

The rise in the cost of prescription drugs is due to more spending for marketing, which now exceeds the cost of research for most drug companies, says this Milwaukee Journal Sentinel story.

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