The United States spent an estimated $247 billion for health care in 1980 (Figure 1), an amount equal to 9.4 percent of the Gross National Product (GNP). Highlights of the figures that underlie this estimate include the following: Health care expenditures in 1980 accelerated at a time when the economy as a whole exhibited sluggish growth. The 9.4 percent share of the GNP was a dramatic increase from the 8.9 percent share in 1979. Health care expenditures amounted to $1,067 per person in 1980 (Table 1). Of that amount, $450, or 42.2 percent, came from public funds. Expenditures for health care included $64.9 billion in premiums to private health insurance, $70.9 billion in Federal payments, and $33.3 billion in State and local government funds (Table 2). Hospital care accounted for 40.3 percent of total health care spending in 1980 (Table 3). These expenditures increased 16.2 percent between 1979 and 1980, to a level of $99.6 billion. Spending for the services of physicians increased 14.5 percent to $46.6 billion, 18.9 percent of all health care spending. All third parties combined--private health insurers, governments, philanthropists, and industry--financed 67.6 percent of the $217.9 billion spent for personal health care in 1980 (Table 4), ranging from 90.9 percent of hospital care services to 62.7 percent of physicians' services and 38.5 percent of the remainder (Table 5). Direct payments by consumers reached $70.6 billion in 1980 (Table 6). This accounted for 32.4 percent of all personal health care expenses. Outlays for health care benefits by the Medicare and Medicaid programs totaled $60.6 billion, including $35.8 billion for hospital care. The two programs combined to pay for 27.8 percent of all personal health care in the nation (Table 7).