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A System of Health Accounts

2011 Edition

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A System of Health Accounts 2011 provides a systematic description of the financial flows related to the consumption of health care goods and services. As demands for information increase and more countries implement and institutionalise health accounts according to the system, the data produced are expected to be more comparable, more detailed and more policy relevant.

This new edition builds on the original OECD Manual, published in 2000, and the Guide to Producing National Health Accounts to create a single global framework for producing health expenditure accounts that can help track resource flows from sources to uses. The Manual is the result of a four-year collaborative effort between the OECD, WHO and the European Commission, and sets out in more detail the boundaries, the definitions and the concepts – responding to health care systems around the globe – from the simplest to the more complicated.

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Trade in Health Care

As defined in Chapter 4 “Global boundaries of health care”, the System of Health Accounts focuses on final consumption of health care goods and services by the resident population, irrespective of where this takes place. As a further qualification, this should also be irrespective of who is financing the goods or services consumed. Therefore, current health expenditure should include all final consumption by residents, both in the economic territory and abroad. This means the explicit inclusion of imports (health care goods and services provided by non-resident units, HP.9) and the exclusion of exports (those goods and services provided to non-residents by resident providers, HP.1-8) in order to correctly determine total health spending.

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