Member access

4-Traders Homepage  >  News

News

Latest NewsCompaniesMarketsEconomy & ForexCommoditiesHot NewsMost Read NewsRecomm.Business LeadersVideosCalendar 

OECD - Organisation for Economic Co-operation and : Health spending in Europe falls for the first time in decades

11/16/2012 | 06:51am US/Eastern

16/10/12-  Health spending fell across the European Union in 2010, as cash-strapped governments curbed outlays to help cut budgetary deficits, according to Health at a Glance: Europe 2012, a new joint report by the OECD and the European Commission.

This drop in spending per person and as a percentage of GDP reverses increases seen in the years before the economic crisis, when health spending per person grew two or three times faster than incomes in many countries.  From an annual average growth rate of 4.6% between 2000 and 2009, health spending per capita fell to -0.6% in 2010.  This is the first time health spending has fallen in Europe since 1975.

In Ireland, health spending fell 7.9% in 2010, compared with an average annual growth rate of 6.5% between 2000 and 2009. In Estonia, health expenditure per person dropped by 7.3% in 2010, following growth of over 7% per year from 2000 to 2009, with reductions in both public and private spending.  In Greece, estimates suggest that health spending per person fell 6.7% in 2010, reversing annual growth of 5.7% between 2000 and 2009.

The report cautions that the reduction or slowdown in spending in nearly all EU countries may have a long-term impact on health care outcomes.



Source: Health at Glance: Europe 2012 (based on OECD Health Data 2012; Eurostat Statistics Database; WHO Global Health Expenditure Database).

Spending on disease prevention accounts for only 3% of total health spending

Governments, under pressure to protect funding for acute care, are cutting other expenditures such as public health and prevention programmes. In 2010, on average across EU countries, only 3% of health budgets was allocated to prevention and public health programmes in areas such as immunisation, smoking, alcohol drinking, nutrition and physical activity. The report notes that spending on prevention now can be much more cost-effective than treating diseases in the future.

More than half of adults in the European Union are now overweight, and 17% are obese.  Obesity rates have doubled since 1990 in many European countries, and now range from 8% in Romania and Switzerland to over 25% in Hungary and the United Kingdom. Obesity and smoking are the major risk factors for heart disease and stroke which accounted for over one-third (36%) of all deaths across EU countries in 2010.

Finland, France and Hungary have recently introduced taxes on unhealthy food and drink as part of their efforts to counter obesity.  These "fat taxes" are designed to change eating habits, while at the same time generating public revenues that may be used to support other public health and prevention programmes.

The OECD and European Commission's Health at a Glance: Europe 2012 presents key indicators of health status, determinants of health, health care resources and activities, quality of care, health expenditure and financing in 35 European countries, including the 27 EU member states, 5 candidate countries and 3 EFTA countries.

Other findings from the report include:

  • Health spending as a share of GDP was highest in the Netherlands (12%) in 2010, followed by France and Germany (11.6%).  The share of GDP allocated to health was 9.0% on average across EU countries, down from 9.2% in 2009.

  • Doctors:  Despite concerns of shortages, the number of doctors per capita has increased in almost all EU member states over the past decade from an average 2.9 per 1 000 population in 2000 to 3.4 in 2010. Growth was particularly rapid in Greece and the United Kingdom.

  • Generalist/Specialist balance: There are now many more specialists than GPs in nearly all countries due to lack of interest in traditional "family medicine" practice and a growing remuneration gap. The slow growth or reduction in generalists raises concerns about access to primary care for certain population groups.

To know more

The electronic version of the report is available at:

http://www.oecd.org/health/healthataglanceeurope.htm

http://ec.europa.eu/health/reports/european/

For more information contact:

Mark Pearson (+33 1 45 24 92 69 or mark.pearson@oecd.org), OECD Health Division

Gaétan Lafortune (+33 1 45 24 92 67 or gaetan.lafortune@oecd.org), OECD Health Division

Frederic Vincent  (+ 32 229 87166 or Frederic.VINCENT@ec.europa.eu), European Commission

Follow the discussion on Twitter using #OECDHealth

distributed by
React to this article
Latest news
Date Title
07:44a MAST THERAPEUTICS : Change in Directors or Principal Officers (form 8-K)
07:44a ABENGOA : Innovative solar power plant to boost national grid launched at the height of South African energy challenges
07:44aDJEuro Rebounds on Upbeat Data --Upate
07:44a PUBMATIC : Debuts Native Advertising as it Expands its Programmatic Platform for Publishers
07:44a CLEAN HARBORS : to Present at the 36th Annual Raymond James Institutional Investors Conference
07:43a KELLER : Adjusted Profit Rises Despite Sterling Strength (UPDATE)
07:43a Futures flat after strong February; data on tap
07:42a FTSE drops away after touching new record high
07:42a SERENGETI RESOURCES INC. : Serengeti Provides Update on Major Strategic Investment by South Korea's Leading Trading Corporation
07:41a AMBAC FINANCIAL : Results of Operations and Financial Condition (form 8-K)
Latest news
Advertisement
Hot News 
RURELEC : To Pay Off Short-Term Loan As It Eyes Return To Dividends
TCP : Issues Statement on Recent Litigation
ULS TECHNOLOGY : Strikes Deal To By Consultancy Legal Eye
WEIGHT WATCHERS : We lost more than 13st and fell in love at fat club! ; Kerry Cadman was single and overweight when she signed up for a slimming class, but she came...
INVESCO PERPETUAL ENHANCED INCOME : Total Voting Rights
Most Read News
05:49a NXP to buy Freescale, create $40 billion company
03/01 HAVYARD ASA : Lasse Stokkeland new head of Havyard Ship Technology AS
03/01 PURE WAFER : 2015 02 25 Trading Update Following Fire
03/01DJNEW WORLD DEVELOPMENT : Re-Designates Adrian Cheng as Vice-Chairman
03/01 Samsung unveils sleek new Galaxy phones to battle Apple
Most recommended articles
07:43a Futures flat after strong February; data on tap
07:42a FTSE drops away after touching new record high
07:39aDJMARKET SNAPSHOT : U.S. Stocks: Futures Edge Higher Ahead Of Data Deluge
07:38a Oil falls toward $61 on dollar, supply concerns
07:37a Oil falls towards $61 on dollar, supply concerns
Dynamic quotes  
ON
| OFF