OECD Reviews of Health Systems: Switzerland 2006

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The Swiss population enjoys good health and universal access to a comprehensive range of modern health services, but policy makers are faced with considerable policy challenges, particularly to contain fast-growing health spending and improve value for money. This book analyses the strengths and weaknesses of the Swiss health system. It weighs them against the key policy objectives of health-system effectiveness and responsiveness, access to care and equitable financing, efficient supply of services, and financial sustainability. The report assesses new proposals for reform of the health system and provides policy recommendations to help address current and upcoming challenges facing the Swiss authorities.

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Executive Summary

The Swiss health system meets a range of important goals set for it. Measures of health status compare well with other OECD countries. It has achieved universal health-insurance coverage, permitting access to a broad range of health-care services. Up-to-date medical services are widely available and patients are largely satisfied with the health services they receive. However, these successes come at a high financial cost. Spending on health as a share of GDP (or GNP) is among the highest in the OECD area, and continues to increase more rapidly than GDP. At the same time, other OECD countries perform equally well, or even better, at lower levels of health spending.

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