Denmark offers universal and mandatory health coverage to all registered residents, which covers all primary and hospital services, free of cost for the patient. For dental care, pharmaceuticals, physiotherapy, and eye care, there is a cost-sharing component, with caps on out-of-pocket payments. The healthcare system is financed by the central government through an eight percent tax on income. Responsibilities for system administration and regulation are divided between the national, regional, and local governments.
In addition to the state funded coverage, 38% of the population also opted for complementary voluntary health insurance in 2011, which is provided by non-profit organizations and works to reimburse out-of-pocket healthcare costs for services that the state does not cover. Recently, more people are also looking towards supplementary voluntary health insurance, which allows access to private treatment centers, covers elective surgeries, reduces wait times, and, in some cases, provides lump sum payments to critically ill patients. Supplementary voluntary health insurance is generally provided by employers in the private sector as an employment benefit. In 2010, the government funded 84% of national healthcare expenditure, while 14% of costs were out-of-pocket. The remaining 2% came from voluntary health insurance.
In recent years, Denmark has gravitated towards a more centralized model, lowering the number of regions and municipalities in the country. Consequently, the state has merged hospitals across the industry and is now looking to make improvements to the system. There has been an increased focus on the use of information technology. Free choice of hospitals and the implementation of maximum wait times are some of the latest reforms to the system.
While the market for pharmaceuticals is relatively small in Denmark, it is a leading market for generics, largely due regulations that require pharmacies to fill prescriptions with the lowest-cost generic option available.
5.7 million(2016, World Bank)
$306 billion(2016, World Bank, USD)
- Healthcare Spending:
$33 billion(2016, Brocair estimate, USD)
- Healthcare Spending as % of GDP:
10.8%(2014, World Bank)
- Annual Healthcare Spending Per Capita:
$5,789(2016, Brocair estimate, USD)