Military Medical

Pentagon mulling options to cut health care bill

Health-care costs are taking a bigger bite out of everyone's wallet and the Pentagon is no exception. Assistant Defense Secretary for Health Affairs, Doctor William Winkenwerder, tells AP Radio the department's medical bill has doubled in the last five years to 36 billion dollars.

The cost could top 50 billion annually by 2010. Officials are weighing their options to contain the spiralling costs.

Winkenwerder steered clear of the politically sensitive suggestion that perhaps active duty military should pay a nominal fee for coverage. He says, to some degree, the Pentagon's medical plan is a victim of its own success. It's so good that a lot of retirees have been dropping other coverage to join up.