SLOVAKIA’S health-care expenditures lag behind the average among countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

While health-care spending in Slovakia totalled 8.1 percent of GDP in 2012, the average in OECD countries was around 9.3 percent, as stems from the OECD Health Data 2014 report, based on figures from 2012, the SITA newswire reported.

However, the difference from the OECD average was even greater the previous year. In 2011, health-care spending in Slovakia totalled 7.9 percent of GDP compared to 9.3 percent in the OECD.

The other countries of the Visegrad Group (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia) did
not reach the average for OECD countries in 2012, either. In the ranking they even placed behind Slovakia. Health-care spending was lower in Poland (6.8 percent of GDP), Czech Republic (7.5 percent of GDP) and Hungary (8 percent of GDP).

Leading the ranking with health-care spending above the OECD average was the US with 16.9 percent of GDP, followed by the Netherlands (11.8 percent), France (11.6 percent) and Switzerland (11.4 percent).

“The Slovak Republic has recorded a very high increase in health care spending in the years preceding the economic crisis, far above the OECD average,” the OECD report reads, as quoted by SITA. “Spending growth in Slovakia finally slowed and in the years 2010 and 2011 dropped in real terms.”

Per capita spending in Slovakia lagged behind the OECD average by $1,379 (USD), while two years ago it was $2,105, SITA wrote. In an annual comparison, per capita spending increased in Slovakia. In the preceding year health-care spending per capita was $1,915.

As the report also notes, spending on medication has fallen in recent years in many OECD countries, and Slovakia was no exception, with a reduction by three to four percent in 2011 and 2012 in real terms. This decline can be attributed to the introduction of referencing the price of medicine in 2009 and 2010.

Source: SITA

Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information
presented in its Flash News postings.