February 5, 2018

Finnish healthcare offers best bang for buck in EU

Finland excelled particularly in delivering top outcomes at a relatively low cost.
Finland excelled particularly in delivering top outcomes at a relatively low cost.
Riitta Supperi/Keksi/ Team Finland

Finland has established itself as a champion of healthcare in Europe, according to Health Consumer Powerhouse.

The country retained its sixth place in the latest iteration of the Euro Health Consumer Index, a comparison of healthcare systems across the continent published annually by the health-oriented think tank based in Sweden.

Finland excelled particularly in delivering top outcomes at a relatively low cost, ranking first in terms of value-for-money healthcare. Norway, for example, is spending almost two times as much per capita on healthcare – over 6 000 US dollars – but has failed to produce better outcomes than Finland.

Norway and Luxembourg shared fourth place in the Euro Health Consumer Index 2017. Also, the Netherlands (first), Switzerland (second) and Denmark (third) ranked ahead of Finland.

Health Consumer Powerhouse commended Finland for its pragmatic approach to clearing waiting lists but pointed out that the availability of dental care, cataract surgery and other comfort care services remains limited. The accessibility of healthcare was a concern also due to poor same-day access to family doctors and access to medical specialists without referral.

The country has successfully reduced smoking and road fatalities but failed to make progress on promoting physical exercise.

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