Total expenditure on health in the EU absorbs a significant and growing share of public spending in EU countries. In 2013, 10% of the EU's GDP was used for this purpose, of which 77% was public spending. As hospital inpatient care accounts for 30% of total health expenditure, and as health expenditure will continue rising, due to ageing populations and costly technological innovations, it is necessary to examine how to address the twin objectives of containing costs and ensuring high quality of services. Better planning of hospital capacity, more efficient procurement, improving integrated care and the performance of primary care can help to increase efficiency in hospital spending.
Related publication: Cost-containment policies in hospital expenditure in the European Union