OECD Economics Department Working Papers

Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.

The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.

English, French

France: improving the efficiency of the health-care system

France’s health-care system offers high-quality care. Average health outcomes are good, public satisfaction with the health-care system is high, and average household out-of-pocket expenditures are low. As in other OECD countries, technology is expanding possibilities for life extension and quality, and spending is rising steadily, while an ageing population requires substantially more and different services. The main challenges are to promote prevention and cost-efficient behaviour by care providers, tackle the high spending on pharmaceuticals, strengthen the role of health insurers as purchasing agents and secure cost containment. Good-quality information and appropriate financing schemes would ensure stronger efficiency incentives. Disparities of coverage across social groups and health services suggest paying greater attention to co-ordination between statutory and complementary insurance provision. Ongoing reforms to improve prevention and co-ordination among care providers are steps in the right direction. However, progress in the development of capitation-based payment schemes, which can reduce the incentives to increase the number of medical acts and encourage health professionals to spend more time with their patients, and performance-based payment schemes in primary care need to be stepped up to respond to the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases and curb supplier-induced demand and social disparities in access to care.

English Also available in: French

Keywords: generics, prevention, health practitioners, health policy, ageing, fee-for-services, healthcare coordination, medical demography, France, primary healthcare, health disparities, hospital, health care system, health insurance, pharmaceutical expenditures
JEL: I13: Health, Education, and Welfare / Health / Health Insurance, Public and Private; I15: Health, Education, and Welfare / Health / Health and Economic Development; I12: Health, Education, and Welfare / Health / Health Behavior; I18: Health, Education, and Welfare / Health / Health: Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health; I11: Health, Education, and Welfare / Health / Analysis of Health Care Markets
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