Health at a Glance: Europe 2014

image of Health at a Glance: Europe 2014

This third edition of Health at a Glance: Europe presents a set of key indicators related to health status, determinants of health, health care resources and activities, quality of care, access to care, and health expenditure and financing in 35 European countries, including the 28 European Union member states, four candidate countries and three EFTA countries. The selection of indicators is based largely on the European Core Health Indicators (ECHI) shortlist, a set of indicators that has been developed to guide the reporting of health statistics in the European Union. This is complemented by additional indicators on quality of care, access to care and health expenditure, building on the OECD expertise in these areas.

Compared with the previous edition, this third edition includes a greater number of ECHI indicators, reflecting progress in the availability of comparable data in the areas of non-medical determinants of health and access to care. It also includes a new chapter dedicated to access to care, including selected indicators on financial access, geographic access and timely access.


Executive summary

European countries have achieved significant gains in population health, but there remain large inequalities in health status both across and within countries. Life expectancy at birth in European Union (EU) member states has increased by more than five years on average since 1990, although the gap between those countries with the highest and lowest life expectancies remains around eight years. There are also persistently large inequalities within countries among people from different socio-economic groups, with individuals with higher levels of education and income enjoying better health and living several years longer than those more disadvantaged. These disparities are linked to many factors, including some outside health care systems, such as the environment in which people live, individual lifestyles and behaviours, and differences in access to and quality of care.


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