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Health at a Glance 2013

OECD Indicators

image of Health at a Glance 2013

This seventh 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 health costs, health activities and health results of health systems. Key health indicators provide information on health status including suicide and life expectancy, the determinants of health, health care activities and health expenditure and financing in OECD countries. Each health 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 health data, and a methodological box on the definition of the indicator and any limitations in data comparability.

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Influenza vaccination for older people

Influenza is a common infectious disease that affects between 5 and 15% of the population each year (WHO, 2009). Most people with the illness recover quickly, but elderly people and those with chronic medical conditions are at higher risk of complications and even death. Influenza can also have a major impact on the health care system. In the United Kingdom, an estimated 779 000 general practice consultations and 19 000 hospital admissions were attributable to influenza per year (Pitman et al., 2006). At certain times of the year, influenza can place health systems under enormous stress. For example, in Toronto, C-anada, every 100 local cases of influenza resulted in an increase of 2.5 hours per week of ambulance diversion; this is a clear sign of emergency department overcrowding (Hoot et al., 2008; Schull et al., 2004).

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Graphs

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