Biographical note of Denmark Permanent Representative to the OECD.
This review of health care quality in Denmark examines policies related to quality and includes chapters covering primary and integrated care, hospital specialisation and equity. It finds that with a dense array of disease- and service-focused quality initiatives, and with information on the quality of care stored in separate data repositories, Denmark needs to create effective links and synergies between them to drive up quality in the healthcare system as a whole, rather than in disconnected elements.
Primary care will be central in meeting Denmark’s future healthcare challenges of an ageing population with multiple chronic conditions. Therefore, an urgent need is to create a national vision of how a modernised primary care sector will fulfill this new coordination role. National standards, clinical guidelines, accreditation of clinical pathways and targeted financial incentive programmes could support this role, along with more transparent and formalised continual professional development.
To facilitate quality improvement from the ambitious hospital rationalisation, Denmark should collect and disseminate data on the quality of individual physicians as well as the hospitals. Undergraduate training and medical research should be reviewed in light of the new service arrangements. Close surveillance will be needed to monitor whether certain patient groups forego healthcare because travel times to providers are too long. Limited data availability complicate Denmark’s ability to monitor its commitment to equitable healthcare. There is an urgent need for renewed action to tackle risk factors of chronic ill-health that disproportionately affect low-income groups. Better information on the impact of user-charges on unmet need in low-income groups is needed.
The Danish central government and regions are leading international efforts to reform hospital systems, improving quality and safety by gathering specialists into major hospitals and closing smaller ones.
Denmark’s enforcement of its foreign bribery laws has been weak. Only 13 foreign bribery allegations have surfaced, and sanctions have been imposed in just one case that falls under the Convention. Law enforcement authorities have not been sufficiently proactive, and cases have been prematurely closed without complete investigations. Denmark must take more investigative steps and make greater efforts to gather evidence from abroad.
Tackling mental ill-health of the working-age population is becoming a key issue for labour market and social policies in OECD countries. OECD governments increasingly recognise that policy has a major role to play in keeping people with mental ill-health in employment or bringing those outside of the labour market back to it, and in preventing mental illness. This report on Denmark is the third in a series of reports looking at how the broader education, health, social and labour market policy challenges identified in Sick on the Job? Myths and Realities about Mental Health and Work (OECD, 2012) are being tackled in a number of OECD countries. It concludes that the Danish system has a number of strengths that have yet to be used in a more effective way, but also that quite a few changes are needed in order to raise the labour market particiption of people with mental ill-health.
Ongoing reforms of Denmark’s disability benefits and flexjobs are promising, but a stronger focus on helping people with their mental health issues is needed for the reforms to contribute to a sustainable decline in the high rate of unemployment, according to a new OECD report. Past labour market reforms failed because underlying mental health problems of the jobless remained unaddressed.
This report presents, for the first time a local ‘green growth’ indicator framework. This indicator framework was developed from the OECD ‘green growth’ strategy at the national level, but modified to highlight issues of transition that are most relevant for local areas.
Secretary-General Angel Gurría addresses the Lord Mayor of Copenhagen and others to discuss highlights of the forthcoming OECD report on local green growth, as part of our efforts to develop more effective tools for measuring cities’ progress and monitoring the impact of green policies.
On 8 October, the Secretary General, Angel Gurría, visited Denmark to participate in the Global Green Growth Forum (3GF) and met with high level representatives of the Danish government.