In 2015, nearly €1058 billion of general government expenditure was spent by the EU Member States on 'health'. This figure is equivalent to 7.2% of the EU's GDP. 'Health' is the second largest item of public expenditure, after 'social protection' (19.2%).
Highest share of expenditure on health in Denmark and France, lowest in Cyprus
In 2015, the ratio of government expenditure for health to GDP varied across EU Member States. At the lower end was Cyprus (2.6%), followed by Latvia (3.8%), Romania (4.2%), Greece (4.5%), Luxembourg (4.6%) and Poland (4.7%). In contrast, Denmark (8.6%), France (8.2%), Austria and the Netherlands (both 8.0 %) spent the most in relative terms.
The source dataset can be found here.
Luxembourg and Denmark spent most per inhabitant
The ranking is quite different when the amounts spent are compared with the population of each Member State. On average in 2015, expenditure on health amounted to €2076 per inhabitant in the EU.
The Member States that spent above €3000 per inhabitant were Luxembourg (€4112), Denmark (€4094), the Netherlands (€3194), Sweden (€3170), Austria (€3149), Ireland (€3138) and the United Kingdom (€3020).
At the opposite end of the scale, spending stood below €600 per inhabitant in Romania (€340), Bulgaria (€343), Latvia (€468), Poland (€520), Cyprus (€532) and Hungary (€592).
You can read more about general government expenditure for health (according to the Classification of the Functions of Government- COFOG) in our online article
Please also read our previously published news item on a similar topic:
General government expenditure on defence
General government expenditure on recreation, culture and religion
General government expenditure on public order and safety