Sweden has a universal health care system that covers hospital and primary care services, prescription drugs, mental health, dental care for children and youth, rehabilitation, disability, and patient transport services, and home and nursing care services. Services are provided by the country’s 21 county councils and 289 municipalities.
Health care funding is drawn from central government and local government taxes, but most services have a cost-sharing component, with patients responsible for a modest co-payment for physician consultations or hospital stays. For pharmaceuticals, there is a deductible for which the patient is responsible, and above that amount, there is a cost sharing component.
County councils are responsible for providing funding for mental health care, primary care, and hospital services; municipalities are responsible for funding home care, home services, and nursing home care. In 2005 public funding accounted for 85% of health expenditures.
Private health insurance makes up a tiny proportion of health spending. About 4% of residents are covered by supplemental voluntary health insurance, but that represents only about 0.2% of health expenditures as of 2009. This supplemental insurance helps to decrease waiting times when seeking medical care, which can be long in Sweden. In 2010, 82% of individuals with voluntary health insurance were covered by their employers.
Information technology plays an important role in the Swedish healthcare system. Over 90% of primary care physicians use electronic medical records and over 50% of all prescriptions were e-prescriptions in 2009. While hospitals currently have the option to choose their preferred IT systems, there is an ongoing effort to integrate the systems used at a national level, to allow for greater security and system efficiency.
9.6 million(2013, World Bank)
$580 billion(2013, World Bank, USD)
- Healthcare Spending:
$56 billion(2013, Brocair estimate, USD)
- Healthcare Spending as % of GDP:
9.6%(2012, World Bank)
- Annual Healthcare Spending Per Capita:
$5,801(2013, Brocair estimate, USD)