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2020/07/06 / Erste Group Research

CEE Special | Challenge no.4 Healthcare

Healthcare if the fourth CEE Special Report from the series titled "CEE - 10 challenges for the new decade" after demography, environmental issues and Rule of Law. Intensified prevention and reduction of risk factors are key pre-requisites for improving avoidable mortality in CEE. Healthcare systems need much better planning and use of resources including healthcare staff and digitalization to address new challenges.

It cannot be denied that the healthcare system in CEE would benefit from higher expenditure. CEE countries spent about 2-4% of GDP less on healthcare compared to the EU average in 2017. There is also little doubt that the level of expenditure is related to the demographic structure of society, the health status of its citizens, and preventable or treatable mortality rates. While a 50-year-old in Germany or France can expect to live another 20 years in health, in CEE the expected number of healthy years at 50 ranges from 17 years in Czechia or Poland to only 12 years in Slovakia.

However, expected life in health (be it at birth or later in life) is not only a function of expenditure level. A significant number of lives could be saved in CEE if disease prevention was better (e.g. higher screening intensity). Improved early diagnosis requires, apart from investment in preventive care, an increase in the public awareness that it is better (and cheaper) to prevent than cure. Further, relatively high preventable mortality in CEE is associated with the fact that people are more exposed to risks factors such as smoking, alcohol, air pollution and unhealthy diets.

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General information

AuthorErste Group Research
Product nameCEE Economies Special Report
Topic in focusFX, Macro/ Fixed income
Economy in focusCEE, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia
Currency in focusCroatian Kuna, Czech Koruna, Euro, Hungarian Forint, Polish Zloty, Romanian Leu, Serbian dinar
Sector in focus-


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