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Daily Dutch News in English

Dutch healthcare remains best in Europe

The Netherlands remains No. 1 on the list of health care in Europe! The Dutch health care system shows that many countries can learn something from the Dutch approach: let the professionals regulate health care and limit the operational impact of politicians.

These were the findings of an annual study published today, the Euro Health Consumer Index (EHCI) 2013, examining the performance of 35 national healthcare systems in Europe.

The Netherlands comes out best, followed by Switzerland, Iceland, Denmark, Norway and Belgium. The Netherlands scored 870 of maximum 1000 points. However, NHS Scotland and NHS England scored only 719 and 718 respectively. Importantly, for the first time the Index measures NHS Scotland separately from the rest of the UK.

The Netherlands is the only country that consistently has managed to retain in the top three of the rankings since the first EHCI 2005, says Dr. Arne Björnberg, HCP director and research director.

For the first time the first EHCI was launched in 2005, there is now a clear gap in healthcare provision between the affluent, financially strong parts of Europe and the less affluent, crisis-struck countries. Although treatment results such as cancer and infant survival keep improving all over Europe, there are almost no medium-income countries in the top half of the Index in 2013.

The EHCI has established itself as the “industry standard” of modern healthcare monitoring since the start in 2005. The 2013 edition ranks 35 national European health care systems on 48 indicators, covering six areas that are essential to the health consumer: Patients’ rights and information, Accessibility of treatment (waiting times), Medical outcomes, Range and reach of services provided and Pharmaceuticals. The 2013 Index has now introduced Prevention as a new area, with eight indicators.