Health at a Glance 2009
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Health at a Glance 2009

OECD Indicators

This fifth edition of Health at a Glance provides the latest comparable data on different aspects of the performance of health systems in OECD countries. It provides striking evidence of large variations across countries in the costs, activities and results of health systems. Key indicators provide information on health status, the determinants of health, health care activities and health expenditure and financing in OECD countries.

This edition also contains new chapters on the health workforce and on access to care, an important policy objective in all OECD countries. The chapter on quality of care has been extended to include a set of indicators on the quality of care for chronic conditions.

Each indicator in the book is presented in a user-friendly format, consisting of charts illustrating variations across countries and over time, brief descriptive analyses highlighting the major findings conveyed by the data, and a methodological box on the definition of the indicator and any limitations in data comparability. An annex provides additional information on the demographic and economic context within which health systems operate, as well as a concise description of key characteristics in health system financing and delivery of services in OECD countries.

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Chapter
 

Screening, survival and mortality for cervical cancer You or your institution have access to this content

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Cervical cancer is largely preventable. Screening by regular pelvic exam and pap smears can identify premalignant lesions, which can be effectively treated before the occurrence of the cancer. Regular screening also increases the probability of diagnosing early stages of the cancer and improving survival (Gatta et al., 1998). The Council of the European Union and the European Commission promote population based cancer screening programmes among member States (European Union, 2003; European Commission, 2008c). OECD countries have instituted screening programmes, but the periodicity and target groups vary. In addition, the discovery that cervical cancer is caused by sexual transmission of certain forms of the Human Papilloma Virus has led to the development of promising cancer preventing vaccines (Harper et al., 2006). The efficacy and safety of those vaccines is now well established, but debates about cost-effectiveness and the implications of vaccination programmes for teenagers for a sexually transmitted disease continue in a number of countries (Huang, 2008).
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