Madame Speaker, Vice President Biden, Members of Congress, and the American people:
When I spoke here last winter, this nation was facing the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. We were losing an average of 700,000 jobs per month. Credit was frozen. And our financial system was on the verge of collapse.
As any American who is still looking for work or a way to pay their bills will tell you, we are by no means out of the woods. A full and vibrant recovery is many months away. And I will not let up until those Americans who seek jobs can find them; until those businesses that seek capital and credit can thrive; until all responsible homeowners can stay in their homes. That is our ultimate goal. But thanks to the bold and decisive action we have taken since January, I can stand here with confidence and say that we have pulled this economy back from the brink.
(Source: White House Press Office)
Over the past few days, I’ve been traveling through the Middle East and Europe working to renew our alliances, enhance our common security, and propose a new partnership between the United States and the Muslim world.
But even as I’m abroad, I’m firmly focused on the other pressing challenges we face – including the urgent need to reform our health care system. Even as we speak, Congress is preparing to introduce and debate health reform legislation that is the product of many months of effort and deliberation. And if you’re like any of the Americans I’ve met across this country who know all too well that the soaring costs of health care make our current course unsustainable, I imagine you’ll be watching their progress closely.
Daily Graphic: Percent of Those Who Smoke In U.S. – 1965-2008 | Men, Women, High School Students, Pregnant Women
(Source: Health, United States 2008 – Centers for Disease Control)
Employee Share of Medical Costs Rose by 14.7%
Milliman Inc. is a large actuarial and consulting firm which has been in business since 1947. Its Milliman Medical Index (MMI) measures measures average annual medical spending for a typical American family of four covered by an employer-sponsored preferred provider organization (PPO) program. The most recent MMI can be found in full here.
2009′s MMI Highlights Include:
- The total 2009 medical cost for a typical American family of four is $16,771, compared with the 2008 figure of $15,609. This is a 7.4% increase from 2008 to 2009.
- The employee’s share of medical costs increased 14.7% from 2008.
- This is the third straight year of decreasing cost trends. Even so, the $1,162 increase is the highest since the 2006 increase of $1,169, when cost trends were at 9.6%.
- Every category of costs except inpatient and outpatient facility care experienced lower cost trends than last year.
(Source: White House Press Office)
Good morning. Over the past few months, as we have put in place a plan to speed our economic recovery, I have spoken repeatedly of the need to lay a new foundation for lasting prosperity; a foundation that will support good jobs and rising incomes; a foundation for economic growth where we no longer rely on excessive debt and reckless risk – but instead on skilled workers and sound investments to lead the world in the industries of the 21st century.
Two pillars of this new foundation are clean energy and health care. And while there remains a great deal of difficult work ahead, I am heartened by what we have seen these past few days: a willingness of those with different points of view and disparate interests to come together around common goals – to embrace a shared sense of responsibility and make historic progress.