Euro-Canada Health Consumer Index 2008

A comprehensive benchmarking exercise that analyzes (through patient rights and information, medical outcomes, accessibility, generosity of public healthcare systems and pharmaceuticals) the healthcare performance among 29 European states and Canada. The top five countries (Austria, the Netherlands, France, Switzerland and Germany) have dedicated the Bismarckian healthcare systems (a system based on social insurance where there are multitudes of insurance organizations that are independent of healthcare providers) – it seems that for total customer value, the Bismarck model runs rings around Beveridge (a system in which financing and provision are handled within one organizational system, i.e., financing bodies and providers are wholly or partially within one organization). The EU member states from Central and Eastern Europe are doing surprisingly well considering their much smaller healthcare spending in Purchasing Power adjusted dollars per capita. Estonia seems to lead this sub-group and is a clear winner in the value-for-money adjusted score. Slovakia (rank 24 in ECHCI): not as financially stable as the Czech Republic (rank 15), and not very consumer-oriented. Generally, European healthcare continues to improve but medical outcomes are still appallingly poor in many countries. This is particularly true regarding the number one killer: cardiovascular diseases. Still, very few countries have hospital/clinic catalogues with quality rankings.

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