The average per capita cost of health care services covered bycommercial insurance and Medicare programs increased by 5.58percent over the 12-months ending May 2011, according to data fromStandard & Poor’s Healthcare Economic Composite Index.

The index shows health care costs covered by commercialinsurance increased by 7.35 percent over the year and Medicareclaim costs rose at an annual rate of 2.64 percent. The commercialand Medicare indices are respectively 0.25 and 0.16 percentagepoints above their April 2011 annual rates.

The annual growth rate for the composite accelerated from itsall-time low of +5.37 percent posted in April 2011. This is still3.16 percentage points below the highest rate for the compositeindex, which was up 8.74 percent over the 12-months ending May2010.

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