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Fiscal Sustainability of Health Care and Long-term Care Systems: Commission services and EPC publish Joint Report

07.10.2016 - The report presents policy challenges for health care and long term care in the EU, and options on how to contain spending pressures through efficiency gains, in order to ensure fiscally sustainable access to good quality services for all.

Public expenditure on health care and long-term care has been increasing over the last decades in all EU Member States. In 2015, it accounted for 8.7% of GDP in the EU and could reach up to 12.6% of GDP in 2060, according to the Joint Report on Health Care and Long-term Care Systems and Fiscal Sustainability.

The report, published today by the Commission (Directorate-General for Economic and Financial Affairs) and the Economic Policy Committee (EPC), explores key challenges and possible policy solutions to ensure the fiscal sustainability of health systems in the EU against a backdrop of ageing populations and costly technological innovations, leading to more health care and long-term care expenditure in the future. In particular, governments should address inefficiencies in hospital care and pharmaceutical spending; invest in health promotion, disease prevention, and primary care; and improve the governance of health systems.

Cost-efficiency is particularly important in order to achieve the twin aim of  fiscal sustainability and access to good quality health care services for all. The report also looks at individual ways to improve the cost-efficiency of health care systems in each EU Member State. The Joint Report on Health Care and Long-term Care Systems and Fiscal Sustainability will be discussed by the Eurogroup and ECOFIN next week.


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