Given the challenges faced by health systems, an effective dialogue across government agencies responsible for health outcomes is critical. To help facilitate this dialogue, the OECD Joint Network of Senior Budget and Health Officials brings together people from ministries of finance, health and social security agencies.
Over the years, the Network has provided an effective space for government officials to openly discuss challenges and solutions to the fiscal sustainability of health systems. Since 2015, this Network has expanded beyond OECD member countries, in partnership with the World Health Organization, The Global Fund and other international institutions. Regional networks exist in Asia, Central Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, and Latin America and the Caribbean.
THE FISCAL SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGE FOR HEALTH
Projected health expenditure as a share of government expenditure, OECD average by scenario
Source: OECD Health Division projections, 2019.
Health expenditure has typically outpaced economic growth, with the latest OECD modelling projecting total health expenditure to reach over 11% of GDP by 2040, up from 9% in 2017. To fund this increase, OECD countries would need to dedicate 19% of public budgets to health, on average, by 2040.
Budget and health officials face the shared challenge of improving efficiency and effectiveness, and controlling growth in health spending, without compromising important achievements in access and quality.
Projected health expenditure to 2040 under different scenarios:
‒ base policy scenario: policies remain similar to how they are today
‒ cost control: effective cost containment policies that offset health spending drivers
‒ cost pressure: less effective cost containment policies are combined with rising public expectations on health care services and the introduction of expensive new technologies
Learn more on our work on Health expenditure.
The OECD Journal on Budgeting provides insights on leading-edge institutional arrangements, systems and instruments for the allocation and management of resources in the public sector. This special issue on health consists of seven articles, including:
MEETINGS OF the Joint Network
The meetings of the OECD Joint Network on Fiscal Sustainability of Health Systems provide a valuable space for health and finance officials to increase their understanding of policy responses at the intersection of health policy and public finance. The Joint Network holds annual meetings for OECD member countries in Paris and regional network meetings for members and non-members. The regional meetings are held in partnership with The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and the World Health Organization.
OECD member countries network:
KEY OUTPUTS AND PUBLICATIONS
Country case studies on health financing and budgeting practices for health:
Through the OECD Joint Network of Senior Budget and Health Officials, the OECD Secretariat provides expertise on health budgeting, expenditure and public management to help public sector officials improve the efficiency and effectiveness of health financing. In particular the Secretariat’s experts provide:
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