27 Apr, 2014 @ 15:00
1 min read

Spain still has best healthcare in Europe, claims report

Hospital ward

SPAIN’s healthcare system is the best in Europe, claims a new study.

And the country is ranked fifth best in the world, in the study by Bloomberg which measured efficiency, life expectancy and cost.

The report comes after a number of studies showed that Spanish health care has deteriorated dramatically over recent years due to national budget cuts.

British medical journal ‘The Lancet’ recently slammed its quality following drastic 30% cuts over the last few years.

Despite this, Spain’s efficiency rating was 68.3, its life expectancy was 82.3, and the cost of healthcare as a percentage of GDP per capita was 10.4%.

This is compared to the UK’s efficiency rating of 55.7, life expectancy of 80.8, and healthcare cost percentage of 9.4%.

Hong Kong topped the list of the ‘most efficient healthcare countries in the world’, followed by Singapore.

Japan and Israel also made the top five, while the UK came 14th, and the US ranked 46th.

The results were greatly affected by Bloomberg’s decision to take cost into account.

This sent countries with good but very expensive healthcare – like the US – far down the last.

Imogen Calderwood

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  1. Hello !!

    Where was this “report” produced?

    Spain, perchance?

    I have heard that healthcare in Catalonia is exemplary, but frankly from what I have experienced in Andalucia, its an effing disgrace. And thats being generous..

  2. Bing Dong, i don’t know what your experience was but I can’t fault the healthcare here. After all, I’m still alive, which I wouldn’t be if I was in the UK. I would never have got past being on the waiting list!

  3. @ Bing Dong
    Which particular rock do you live under. We live in Andalucia and my wife has had serious health problems over the past year culminating in stage 3 B lung cancer, the treatment and initially diagnosis has been excellent, like Steve she is still alive. Had she been in the UK she would be dead by now because the NHS wouldn’t have even diagnosed her illness by now. If you have a serious problem go back to the UK and rot in a hospital corridor without food or drink. I personally am sick to death of hearing your sort of crap about Spain. They do far more on way less money than the UK. On all our visits to Spanish hospitals we haven’t once had to put up with drunken English thugs in the waiting rooms. Like many other things perhaps the UK gets the health service it deserves. Once it has rid the country of savages perhaps it can provide decent public services.

  4. I think it depends on where you live what treatment is metered out we lived in Spain for ten years in Andalucia and it was always a worry if we became seriously ill especially as an operation for a hip replacement went badly wrong because of incompetence.
    Now we are back home living, we enjoy fresh water on tap,sewerage,free banking,telephone and living in a 100%legal house and the cost of living is no dearer here than there,saying that we miss the sunshine.

  5. “Bing Dong… I personally am sick to death of hearing your sort of crap about Spain”. Here, here! The only negative aspect of living in Southern Spain has to be the prevalence of loud-mouthed Brits!

    Having lived through a massive recession, and burdened with corrupt, self-seeking politicians, all of Spain’s social services have done a tremendous job maintaining the best possible standards. From my experience both Spain’s #5 and the US’s #46 ratings are realistic, and well-deserved!

  6. What a joke…i ve been in hospitals where the rx gear came out of the beginning of the 19″ century, where the doctor on guard smelled like a wiskey barrow…and where the penicilline was still injected instead of a simple pill…And look up the article about the rotten food , given to patients in Spain..

    Take a look at hospitals in Switserland…Belgium of Holland…

  7. There are a few nasty little trolls (all trolls tend to be little men) who say I hate Spain, I bet I still have more ‘real’ Spanish friends than they ever had or will have.

    Having experienced the health care systems in Galicia and Andalucia I can say that there has been a virtual revolution in standards over 30 years.

    The cleanliness is way better in Spain than in the UK and the Andalucian medics are far friendlier than the xenophobic ones in Galicia – they just don’t like foreigners.

    Having lost 30% of their budgets of course standards have fallen.

    The lunacy in the Spanish healthcare system is that there is’nt one. Each region is autonomous, each with it’s own heirachy of parasitic managers/functionarios. It’s these completely irrelevant non productive leaches that should have been swept away in the cost cutting – wait a minute that’s the same in the UK.

    Having experienced first hand hospitals in Spain and France I can say that the French ones are only just better than the Spanish ones were – until Spain’s economic collapse.

    Having a partner who spent her whole working life as specialist in paediatric nursing and who despairs at how it has all deteriorated since the nasty woman came to power and continued by the shadow Tories, laughingly called the Labour party, no Brit should be finger pointing at any of the autonomous health systems in Spain. Especially as most of the medical staff are Spanish – take away all the foreigners working in the NHS (which it is’nt anymore) and it would collapse.

  8. I am an American who had to be rushed to the hospital in the north of Spain for chest pains. I had excellent care and treatment by the staff, including doctors and nurses!

  9. Being a grumpy Brit I need to ask…..

    What possible relevance is the fact that you are American to do with the fact that you were rushed to hospital?

    Having said that I am pleased for you that you have had good care.

    To you and all the others, I have had nothing but dreadful treatment for the 11 years I have been in Spain, although I seem to be getting the impression that it REALLY depends on where you live.

  10. I’ve heard people saying they wouldn’t be alive if they had similar treatment methods back in the uk, with the waiting lists too. (a uk doctor’s opinion too)

    ‘There are a few nasty little trolls (all trolls tend to be little men) who say I hate Spain, I bet I still have more ‘real’ Spanish friends than they ever had or will have.’

    Stuart, That’s the most out of the blue starting comment I’ve ever read. ha ha You really are a bitter man aren’t you. What did Spain do to you? I’ve got more friends than you etc – grow up! You sound like a 12 year old.

  11. I experienced both private and non private while living in spain. hubby got pnuemonia and ended up in the costa del sol hospital and had great treatment apart from a three wheeled squeaky wheelchair lol
    when we went private it was awful we used the hospital in torremolinos st elena I think , waiting room full to bursting ,horrible doctors, never again.
    I have just come out of a hospital in the uk was supposed to have a small hernia repair as a day case but surgeon put a hole in my bowel and removed my appendix was in a right state, lots of spanish nurses there but some dont understand what they are told to do which is worrying.

  12. All experiences we have had with the SAS – we’ve only lived in Andalucia – have been excellent. Treatment (on one occasion, for a serious and potentially life-threatening condition, was textbook and could not have been bettered elsewhere). But then again, for us at least, the same was true of the NHS when we lived in the UK.

  13. As an American ex-Pat living in Andalucia, I can honestly say that we have not been happier with the quality of healthcare here (childbirth, herniated discs)……however, the #46 rating for the US seems a bit generous.

  14. Fred, you gravitate to and befriend all the people who either slate Spain or are simply nasty on this website. I’ve said before, you’re either a bully or 4ft tall?

  15. Derek, why is Shirley’s experience of the Spanish healthcare system any more valid than Bing’s? Loosen up and get more sleep – posting at 2AM shows you have an obsession with this blog.

  16. Fred,
    it shows he has’nt got a life and in his last post once again he exposes himself – he is the bully (or likes to think he is)and of course he is the 4 footer – little men with a chip on their shoulder.

  17. Strange how many come on with sweeping statements that they wouldn’t be alive now if they were in the UK….hello, how can they know that! Are they experts on everything. Look at recent official figures in Spanish hospitals, many of the waiting lists are longer than the UK. I could tell a few horror stories equally as bad about Spain. There was a story recently about a hospital in Andalucia that didn’t have a working X-ray machine!

  18. I’m a French Canadian presently living in Spain, where I found the healthcare system to be excellent. Clean, well equipped, modern, well staffed hospitals, and plenty of them. The standard of medical attention, care and availability of treatments is excellent and the private hospitals are even better, truly first class. Due to my occupation, I’ve lived in several European countries (Denmark, Norway, Holland, Switzerland) Switzerland was ok too, but the rest specially Norway, were behind Spain in every respect.

  19. I have been living here in Spain for over 3 years now and i must say the GP, the family doctor i have is terrible! in 3 years i have not once had my blood pressure checked! I have recently become pregnant and i had to wait over a month just for a blood test to confirm this!!!!! 1 month??? just for a blood test. I believe the treatment in the hospitals to be better, but from my experience the GP´s here are uninterested in the patient, and only want to write a prescription and get you out of their room.
    This is my own opnion based on my own experience, I am no troll!

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