Performance analysis of healthcare systems in European countries

Author: Prof. Corrado lo Storto, PhD (University of Naples Federico II)

Keywords: healthcare, efficiency, benchmarking, Europe, data envelopment analysis

Measuring efficiency in the utilization of public resources has become one major Abstract: concern of national and regional governments, both in developed and underdeveloped countries. The objective of this paper is to present the results of a benchmarking study that measured efficiency of the national healthcare systems in 31 European countries, from 2011 to 2014.

Data were collected from the Eurostat dataset, while Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) was used as a computational technique to generate an objective measurement of efficiency for the countries included in the sample.

Results show that there is a widespread inefficiency in the management of healthcare systems across Europe. Mean efficiency of the whole sample is between 75.7% and 76.6% and between 84.5% and 87.1% respectively under the assumption of constant and variable returns to scale. Efficiency appears associated to management and scale inefficiency, the ratios “number of medical doctors to number of beds in hospitals” and “number of beds to population size”.

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