Health policies and data

Health Statistics


The OECD carries out work on health data and indicators to improve international comparisons and economic analyses of health systems.


Key statistical publications undertaken by the Health Division include: 

OECD Health Statistics 2015

The main OECD Health database includes more than 1200 indicators covering all aspects of health systems for the 34 OECD member countries. Access free data seriesdata visualisations, briefing notes, and the full list of indicators in various languages. The full information on definitions, sources and methods is also available in one single user-friendly document.

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OECD Health Care Quality Indicators

The HCQI project compares the quality of health services in different countries. Access free data on the following topics: Health Promotion, Prevention and Primary Care, Mental Health Care and Cancer Care.

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Health Expenditure: A System of Health Accounts (SHA) 

Access the latest data and main comparative tables and charts on health expenditure.

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Health at a Glance

This series of key statistical publications provides the latest comparable data on different aspects of the performance of health systems in OECD countries. The latest issues include Health at a Glance: Europe 2014Health at a Glance: Asia/ Pacific 2014 and Health at a Glance 2013: OECD Indicators. Access the PDF versions or web books for those publications, and the full data sets through StatLinks, free of charge.

In addition, the OECD analyses health system performance through policy projects.


logo_new_els July 2015

Why so much variation in c-section rates across OECD countries?
Increasing caesarean section rates, 2000 to 2013 (or nearest years)


Caesarean section rates have increased in most OECD countries, with the average rate going up from 20% in 2000 to 28% in 2013. The rise has been particularly strong in middle-income countries like Turkey, Mexico and Chile, where c-section rates now accounts for 45% or more of all deliveries.

This rate is three times higher than in Nordic countries (Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Norway) and in Israel and the Netherlands. Italy provides an example of a country that has been able to reverse the previous trend of rising c-section rates, although there is still room for further reduction particularly in those Italian regions where the rate remains very high.

Non-medically required caesarean sections result in higher risk of maternal mortality, increased maternal and infant morbidity, increased complications for subsequent deliveries, and higher costs.

Source: OECD Health Statistics 2015.

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