Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

Greece vs. EU and USA: Health care

haag.jpgThe Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) publishes a comprehensive annual report and analysis called “OECD Health Data” in July.

OECD countries in this report include: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom and the USA.

A concentrated version called “Health at a Glance 2007” was published this week, which is where these graphs were sourced and now presented without the analysis. It covers a variety of statistics on insurance, lifestyle influences (smoking, alcohol, road accidents), salaries for doctors and nurses, hospital care and government spending.

*Health care in Greece has worsened since this survey. Unpaid debts to pharmacies, hospitals and suppliers have forced providers to shut down or severely alter services; and many residents can no longer afford basic health care due to rising costs and unemployment.

Notes

Countries absent from a graph were excluded by OECD, either because data was not available or the data/survey was somehow tainted, skewed or inappropriately answered.

All graphs are presented as clickable images that will enlarge, since shrinking them only made them unreadable. You have the option to use the OECD link above, however the report is embedded in 50 pages and graphs are presented the same way. Here, you have them all at your fingertips and can choose only the ones that interest you.

1. Demographics

1-1: Population

Total population
population.gif

Annual growth
annual-growth.gif

Aged population
aged.gif

1-2: Birth rate

Overall rate
birthrate.gif

Age entering motherhood
motherhood.gif

1-3: Gross domestic product (GDP)

Overall
gdp.gif

Growth
gdp-growth.gif

2. Health Status

2-1: Life expectancy

By gender
lifeexpectancygender.gif

Rate of increase
lifeexpectancy.gif

Longevity vs. GDP
lifeexpectancyspending.gif

2-2: Disability trends in people over 65

trendsdisability.gif

2-3: Premature death rate by gender

prematuredeathgender.gif

2-4: Death from heart disease and stroke

Heart disease
deathheartdisease.gif

Stroke
deathstroke.gif

2-5: Death from cancer

Lung cancer
deathlungcancer.gif

Breast cancer
deathbreastcancer.gif

Prostate cancer
deathprostatecancer.gif

2-6: Death from road accidents

By population
deathroadaccidents.gif

By gender
deathroadgender.gif

Rate of increase
ratedeathaccidents.gif

2-7: Suicide rates

By population
deathsuicide.gif

By gender
suicidebygender.gif

Rate of increase
suicideratechange.gif

2-8: Infant mortality

Overall rate
deathinfants.gif

Rate of increase
infantmortalityrate.gif

2-9: Infant low birth weight

lowbirthweight.gif

2-10: Child dental health

dentalhealthchildren.gif

2-11: Perceived health status

Overall rate
perceivedhealthstatus.gif

By gender
healthstatusgender.gif

2-12: Death by AIDS

deathaids.gif

3. Lifestyle determinants of health

3-1: Smoking

Overall rate
smoking.gif

By gender
smokingbygender.gif

Rate of increase
smokingrates.gif

Number of cancer-related deaths
smokingcancer.gif

3-2: Alcohol consumption

Overall rate
alcoholoverall.gif

Rate of increase
alcoholincrease.gif

Liver cirrhosis
liver.gif

3-3: Being overweight and obesity

Overall rate
obesityoverall.gif

By gender
obesitygender.gif

Rate of increase
obesityincrease.gif

4. Health care resources and utilization

4-1: Medical and nursing graduates

Number of medical graduates
medicalgraduates.gif

Number of nursing graduates
nursinggraduates.gif

4-2: Practicing physicians

Number of private/public doctors in practice
practicingdoctors.gif

Rate of increase
doctorsincrease.gif

General practitioners vs. specialists
gps-vs-specialists.gif

4-3: Practicing nurses

Overall number
nurses.gif

Rate of increase
nursesrateincrease.gif

Ratio of doctors to nurses
nursetodoctorratio.gif

4-4: Salaries of doctors and nurses (GDP)

Public vs. private doctors
salariesdoctorsnurses.gif

Renumeration vs. density
doctorsratio.gif

Salaries of nurses
doctorsratio1.gif

4-5: Hospital beds (acute care)

Availability per capita
hospitalbedavailable.gif

Occupancy rate
hospitalbedsoccupancy.gif

4-6: Hospital beds (long-term)

Availability per capita
nursinghomebeds.gif

Occupancy rate
nursinghomebedsrate.gif

4-7: Medical technology

MRI
mri.gif

CT scanners
ctscan.gif

Radiation therapy
radiationtherapy.gif

4-8: Consultations with doctors

Overall number
doctorconsultations.gif

Rate of increase
consultationrate.gif

Number per doctor
numberperdoctor.gif

4-9: Hospital discharges (omitted)

4-10: Length of hospital stay

Acute care
acutestay.gif

AMI
stayami.gif

Overall average
stayaverage.gif

4-11: Cardiovascular procedures

revascularization.gif

4-12: Treatment of renal conditions

Number with renal failure
renal.gif

Rate of increase
renalrise.gif

Number of dialysis patients
dialysis.gif

Number of kidney transplants
transplants.gif

4-13: Caesarean sections

Overall rate
caesareansections.gif

Rate of increase
caesareanrate.gif

4-14: Cataract surgeries

Inpatient
cataractinpatient.gif

Day cases
daycases.gif

4-15: Pharmaceutical consumption:

Antidiabetics
antidiabetics.gif

Antidepressants
antidepressants.gif

Anticholesterols
anticholesterols.gif

Antibiotics
antibiotics.gif

5. Health care spending

5-1: Expenditure per capita (public/private)

Overall rate
expeditureprivatepublic.gif

Rate of growth
expendituregrowth.gif

5-2: Expenditure vs. GDP

Private vs. public
expendvsgdp.gif

Actual consumption
actualexpenditure.gif

5-3: Expenditure by function

Overall
overallexpend.gif

Curative-rehabilitative
expendcurative.gif

Public health and prevention
expendpreventative.gif

5-4: Pharmaceutical expenditure

Per capita
expendphara.gif

Percentage of GDP
expendpharmagdp.gif

Annual growth rate
expendpharmagrowth.gif

5-5: Financing of health care

Public share and sources
public-share.gif

Public share of pharmaceuticals/services
services-pharma.gif

Out-of-pocket/private share
privateoop.gif

5-6: Health insurance coverage

Total
totalcoverage.gif

Private coverage
privatecoverage.gif

6. Quality of health care

The quality of health care section provided limited information and did not include more than a few countries, either because data was not available or the survey was not completed correctly. Therefore, I omitted this data. (Greece was not included, in case you’re wondering).

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Greek residents at mercy of unevaluated doctors
Clinics in Greece cheat insurance fund

4 Comments »

  Stathis wrote @ November 19th, 2007 at 11:18

want to work for ESYE?
;-)

Kisses

  Vasiliki wrote @ June 17th, 2008 at 19:46

I found all these statistics very informative. The number of smokers as a percentage in Greece seemed low. I didn’t meet very many people in Greece who DIDN’T smoke. They also don’t believe that second hand smoke is an issue. My cousin was smoking and drinking while she was 7 months pregnant. I was appalled. I did ask her if she was aware that smoking and drinking during pregnancy could cause low-birth weight, fetal alcohol syndrome and other developmental issues and her response was: “I smoked and drank during all my pregnancies and my other two kids came out just fine”. I shrugged (what else can you do) and walked away from the cloud of smoke forming above her head. I am also a bit surprised that the lung cancer rates are not higher in Greece. Who knows, maybe all the olive oil and garlic purges a lot of illnesses!

  Kat wrote @ June 18th, 2008 at 01:37

That’s a very astute comment. Greeks are the biggest smokers in the EU, and the top cigarette consumers in the world according to this survey:

“When Greeks smoke”
http://thebigc.wordpress.com/2008/05/29/when-the-greeks-smoke/

But in the survey above, the OECD was not privy to some information because Greece was responsible for reporting the data, and it’s not certain whether it was fudged or how the information was gathered since they didn’t disclose their protocol.

I do know a lot of people in my circle who don’t smoke, but I realize this is not ‘normal.’ I’ve often had taxi drivers or men I dated tell me how great it was I didn’t smoke, then proceeded to light up like chimneys. Smoking was technically banned in workplaces in 2003, but I and 4 other non-smokers sat in an one-room office with 75 smokers. I was ill for 3 weeks until I acclimated. That’s not a good thing, however my boss (a non-smoker himself) did not want to enforce the law because he felt productivity was higher if he let people smoke at their desks instead of going outside and “wasting time.”

Heart disease has increased dramatically in recent years, and there was a survey recently that said the Mediterranean diet with olive oil was becoming an endangered species of sorts. Most people don’t adhere to it, preferring fast food and lots of meat and eschewing exercise. One of my Greek friends has a saying for that: “The only time you see Greeks running is for the bus and in the Olympics.” :)

  The Scorpion wrote @ June 19th, 2008 at 07:49

Those who do not have time for exercise or diet will certainly have to find time for the hospital in the future.

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