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Health at a Glance: Europe 2018

State of Health in the EU Cycle

image of Health at a Glance: Europe 2018

Health at a Glance: Europe 2018 presents comparative analyses of the health status of EU citizens and the performance of the health systems of the 28 EU Member States, 5 candidate countries and 3 EFTA countries. It is the first step in the State of Health in the EU cycle of knowledge brokering. This publication has two parts. Part I comprises two thematic chapters, the first focusing on the need for concerted efforts to promote better mental health, the second outlining possible strategies for reducing wasteful spending in health. In Part II, the most recent trends in key indicators of health status, risk factors and health spending are presented, together with a discussion of progress in improving the effectiveness, accessibility and resilience of European health systems.

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Capital expenditure in the health sector

While the health sector remains highly labour-intensive, capital investment in infrastructure and medical equipment has been an increasingly important factor of production of health services in recent decades, as reflected for example by the growing importance of diagnostic and therapeutic devices or the expansion of information and communications technology (ICT) in health care (see the indicator on the adoption and use of Electronic Medical Records and ePrescribing). However, the level of resources invested in buildings, machinery and technology tends to fluctuate more than current spending on health services, often responding to the economic climate whereby investment decisions may be postponed or brought forward.

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