Many European countries saw further reductions in health spending in 2013, according to OECD Health Statistics 2015. Health spending continued to shrink in Greece, Italy and Portugal and most countries in the European Union reported real per capita health spending below the levels of 2009.

Outside the EU average real growth in health spending was around 2.6% in 2013, bolstered by strong growth in Asia and South America. In Chile and Korea, health spending growth was above 5% in 2013; the level of per capita spending has increased in both by close to 25% in real terms since 2009. Figures for Canada show a continuing trend of health spending growth below that of economic growth. In the United States, health spending grew by 1.5% in 2013, less than half the average annual growth rate in the United States prior to 2009.

Preliminary growth figures for a dozen OECD countries suggest a similar modest increase in spending overall in 2014, but with growth remaining well below the pre-crisis levels. Three-quarters of health spending continues to come from public sources across OECD countries, but cost-containment measures in some countries have led to an increase in the private share – either through private health insurance or direct payments by households. Greece and Portugal have seen the private share of health spending increase by around 4% since 2009, the largest increases in the OECD, resulting in a third of all health spending coming from private sources in 2013 in both countries.

These are some of the recent health spending trends shown in OECD Health Statistics 2015, the most comprehensive source of comparable statistics on health and health systems across the 34 OECD countries and key emerging economies. Covering the period 1960 to 2014, this interactive database can be used for comparative analyses on health status, risk factors to health, health care resources and utilisation, and health expenditure and financing.

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