15 Countries with the Best Public Health Systems in the World

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In this article, we will be taking a look at 15 countries with the best public health systems in the world. If you do not want to learn about the global health insurance market, head straight to the 5 Countries with the Best Public Health Systems in the World.

Countries with the best public health systems in the world like Germany, Switzerland, and UK, among others, are those that prioritize the well-being of their citizens through comprehensive healthcare policies, accessible services, and robust infrastructure. These nations are committed to ensuring universal access to healthcare, disease prevention, and promoting healthy living standards. By investing in healthcare advancements, education, and infrastructure, these countries have achieved remarkable outcomes in disease control, life expectancy, and overall population health, setting exemplary standards for the rest of the world. 

Global Healthcare Insurance Market Overview 

The global healthcare insurance market witnessed substantial growth, reaching a value of $1,899 billion in 2021 and projected to escalate to $3,948.7 billion by 2030, reflecting a robust compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.6%. This expansion is attributed to several factors, including the increasing prevalence of chronic diseases, rising disposable income, and advancements in claim settlement services. The market is predominantly categorized into public and private segments, with the public sector holding a significant 56% revenue share in 2020, a trend expected to persist due to heightened confidence in government-backed insurers such as Medicare in the US. 

The healthcare insurance market exhibits high concentration levels within the US, with approximately 95% of markets considered “highly concentrated” in 2022. This concentration results in reduced competition and limited patient choices, with a single health insurer commanding a market share of at least 50% in nearly half of the metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs). The dominance of major players like Blue Cross Blue Shield and UnitedHealth Group significantly influences commercial markets. 

Challenges concerning healthcare accessibility and equity persist, as highlighted by the American Medical Association’s (AMA) study. The study underscores limited competitive options for health insurance in Medicare Advantage and public health exchanges, affecting millions of Americans. Market concentration poses risks by potentially elevating insurance premiums beyond competitive levels. Efforts are underway to scrutinize and potentially restrict detrimental insurance mergers to bolster competition and safeguard patients from anti-competitive practices. 

Advancements and Trends in Healthcare Technology and Investments

Financial statistics reveal that North America dominates the healthcare market, propelled by initiatives like Medicare and Medicaid. Key players in the health insurance arena include United Healthcare, Anthem Inc., Aetna, Cigna, and Humana, among others, contributing to the sector’s growth and evolution. 

The Cigna Group (NYSE:CI) caters to over 100 million customers worldwide with tailored international health insurance plans and access to a vast network of healthcare professionals. They emphasize holistic well-being through innovative tools like the Cigna Wellbeing™ app and Global Telehealth. The Cigna Group (NYSE:CI)’s recent trends include personalized customer experiences, collaboration with organizations for better health outcomes, and expanding their global network. With over 60 years of experience, The Cigna Group (NYSE:CI) serves customers in more than 200 markets and territories worldwide, focusing on creating healthier futures through intuitive offerings and hassle-free customer experiences. 

Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (NASDAQ:ISRG) revolutionizes global healthcare with robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery, setting standards for improved outcomes. Their da Vinci systems are widely adopted, enhancing procedures like bariatrics and colorectal surgeries. Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (NASDAQ:ISRG)’s recent achievements include significant revenue growth, with 415 da Vinci systems placed in Q4 2023 and CE mark certification for the da Vinci single-port (SP) system. Financially, Q4 2023 revenue reached $1.93 billion, with an installed base of 8,606 systems. Intuitive Surgical, Inc. (NASDAQ:ISRG)’s dedication to innovation and strategic investments solidifies its pivotal role in advancing minimally invasive care worldwide. 

The healthcare technology sector presents significant investment opportunities and is experiencing notable trends in 2024. Despite a cooling effect observed in 2022, with venture capital funding dropping by approximately 30% from US$39.3 billion in 2021 to US$27.5 billion in 2022, investments remained higher than in 2020 and more than doubled from 2019. The median health tech deal in 2022 reached a valuation of over US$57 million, significantly surpassing previous years, with late-stage companies attracting the majority of investments (75%) compared to early-stage counterparts (25%). 

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a pivotal innovation in healthcare technology, facilitating diagnostics, disease detection, and enhancing patient care. Additional trends shaping the sector include the proliferation of telehealth services, mobile health (mHealth) applications, modernization of legacy healthcare software, emphasis on data security, and blockchain integration for safeguarding patient health records. 

According to a report by Markets and Markets, the global AI in healthcare market size is expected to reach USD 45.2 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 44.9% from 2021 to 2026. The report also highlights that the mHealth market will reach USD 213.6 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 33.5% from 2020 to 2025. Furthermore, the global blockchain in healthcare market size is expected to reach USD 7,927 million by 2032, growing at a CAGR of 27.62% from 2023 to 2030. 

15 Countries with the Best Public Health Systems in the World15 Countries with the Best Public Health Systems in the World

15 Countries with the Best Public Health Systems in the World

A clinical medical professional helping a patient while using an integrated health information technology software.

Our Methodology 

Our methodology has meticulously ranked health systems based on a consensus to determine the best in the world, which involved evaluating various sources like US News and Reddit threads. We scored public health based on different factors. Considering these factors, we have arrived at a definitive ranking of countries with the best public health systems in the world, presented in ascending order of scores. For health expenditures, we relied on OECD reports. 

Here is our list of the 15 countries with the best public health systems in the world.  

15. New Zealand 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.06 

New Zealand boasts one of the world’s best public health systems, offering universal access to quality care through public and private funding. With approximately 85% of healthcare government-funded, the nation achieves impressive health outcomes. Healthcare expenses are supported by both the public and private sectors, with government investment aligning closely with its commitment to citizen well-being. New Zealand spends $6,061 per capita on health, surpassing the OECD average, with 11.2% of GDP allocated to healthcare.  

14. France 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.13 

France stands among the countries with the best public health systems in the world covering its entire population for essential services. With a high satisfaction rate of 71%, exceeding the OECD average, France prioritizes quality healthcare. Health expenditure accounts for 12.1% of its GDP, reflecting a robust system well-regulated by Parliament. This commitment translates into impressive health indicators and demographics, ensuring comprehensive and accessible healthcare for all citizens. 

13. Japan 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.2 

Japan’s public healthcare system, Social Health Insurance (SHI), covers all citizens and is deemed affordable. Noteworthy for disease prevention and high cancer survival rates, Japan faces challenges with financing due to high public healthcare spending at 9.1% of GDP and staggering overall debt of 254% of GDP in 2020. Shortage of primary care physicians leads to hospital overuse, with stays exceeding OECD averages. 

12. Austria 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.26 

Austria’s public health system is exemplary, featuring comprehensive coverage and well-equipped healthcare facilities. Austria demonstrates a solid financial commitment to healthcare with a robust healthcare workforce and significant investments. Health expenditure per capita surpasses the EU average by EUR 1,000, indicating prioritization of public health. Austria spends $7275 per capita on health, 11.4% of GDP, with 5.4 doctors and 10.6 nurses per 1,000 population. These indicators underscore Austria’s position as a leader in global public health

11. Netherlands 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.33 

The Netherlands boasts one of the world’s best public health systems, emphasizing universal access and solidarity. It consistently ranks highly in Europe for healthcare quality and accessibility. The Netherlands spends $6729 per capita on health, 10.2% of GDP, with ample healthcare professionals per population.  

10. Belgium 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.4 

Belgium’s robust public health system prioritizes quality care, reflected in its above-average life expectancy of 80.7 years, despite challenges highlighted by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation. Belgium’s response to COVID-19 benefits from its well-documented healthcare infrastructure. Spending $6600 per capita on health, 10.9% of GDP, Belgium surpasses OECD averages, demonstrating its commitment to healthcare excellence. 

9. The United Kingdom 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.46 

The United Kingdom (UK) boasts one of the world’s best public health systems, anchored by the National Health Service (NHS), offering accessible, high-quality healthcare. Healthcare spending has steadily risen since 2000, reaching £282.62 billion in 2022, reflecting the nation’s commitment to sustaining and improving healthcare services. Comparative analyses indicate that the UK’s healthcare system outperforms other developed countries in certain areas, with ongoing efforts to enhance it. 

8. Australia 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.53 

Australia’s well-developed public health system ranks high globally for healthcare accessibility and quality. The country’s robust economy financially sustains its healthcare system, with GDP playing a crucial role. Total health spending reached $241.3 billion, with $9,365 per person in 2021. Government health spending increased by 9.5%, reflecting Australia’s commitment to investing in healthcare infrastructure and services. 

7. Germany  

Insider Monkey Score: 0.6 

Germany is globally recognized for its exceptional public health system, anchored by mandatory health insurance with near-universal coverage. The system revolves around the statutory health insurance (SHI) system, comprising 110 sickness funds. Financially, Germany’s healthcare operates under a universal model, funded through contributions from employees, employers, and the government, which ensures accessibility to healthcare services, supported by a robust economy reflected in its GDP. Germany spends $8011 per capita on health, 12.7% of GDP, surpassing OECD averages, reinforcing its reputation for healthcare excellence. 

6. Switzerland 

Insider Monkey Score: 0.66 

Switzerland stands sixth among the countries with the best public health systems in the world, featuring universal healthcare coverage through Mandatory Health Insurance (MHI). Switzerland’s substantial healthcare expenses, accounting for 11.8% of GDP in 2020, reflect its commitment to quality care. With per capita spending at $7,179, Switzerland ranks second globally. This financial commitment underscores its dedication to providing top-notch healthcare services to its residents. 

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Disclosure. None: The 15 Countries with the Best Public Health Systems in the World is originally published on Insider Monkey. 

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