- OECD Economic Studies
- 1995-2856 (online)
- 1995-2848 (print)
OECD Journal: Economic Studies publishes articles in the area of economic policy analysis, applied economics and statistical analysis, generally with an international or cross-country dimension. While it draws significantly on economic papers produced by the Economics Department and other parts of the OECD Secretariat for the Organisation’s intergovernmental committees, the submission of articles produced by non-OECD authors is encouraged. We also welcome comments on articles previously published in the journal. Now published as part of the OECD Journal package.
Improving the efficiency of health care spending
What can be learnt from partial and selected analyses of hospital performance?
- Espen Erlandsen
- 12 Dec 2008
- Bibliographic information
There are no ready-made data on hospital outputs and inputs which would allow comprehensive international comparisons of hospital efficiency to be carried out. This paper, therefore, relies on selected evidence to compare hospital efficiency in a sub-set of OECD countries, based on three different approaches relying on, respectively: i) unit costs for standard hospital treatments; ii) overall efficiency levels in a set of paired countries; iii) within-country dispersion in individual hospital efficiency. The analysis suggests substantial cross-country differences in hospital performance. Although country coverage varies between the different approaches, making it difficult to assess the extent to which comparisons provide a consistent picture of national efficiency levels, cross-checks between the different indicator sets tend to support the robustness of the country rankings.