Countries with the best health system in the world - Ranking 2021

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Martí Micolau

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Every year The Legatum Institute publishes the ranking with the countries that have the best health system in the world.
To compile the list, the statesmen compare 104 variables, divided into 12 sub-categories (environment, business, individual freedom, economic quality, education, security, social capital, governance, health, access to the market and infrastructure, investments and business conditions ).
A fundamental role is played by health care or by how much and how countries invest in people's health.
By health we mean both the physical and mental condition of individuals, the type of health facilities and the readiness for prevention.
Here is the list of the top 10 countries in the world that enjoyed optimal health conditions in 2019; unfortunately, as you can see, Italy is not present because it is in 17th place.


  1. Austria
  2. Holland
  3. Denmark
  4. Iceland
  5. Hong Kong
  6. Norway
  7. South Korea
  8. Switzerland
  9. Japan
  10. Singapore
  11. User questions and comments

10 - Austria

The Austrian health system is financed by social insurance and taxes and only minimally by private means. Citizen assistance is therefore public and the offer is of good quality with modern facilities and equipped with state-of-the-art technological equipment.
Among the various services offered are general and specialist medicine therapies, dental care, hospital assistance, sickness benefits, and prevention and diagnosis programs.
In the country there are many research centers and biotech companies who develop processes for the chemical-pharmaceutical and biotechnological industries.

9 - Holland

Starting with the 2006 health has become private and the management of services is no longer in the hands of the government but of private entities. Therefore citizens must take out basic coverage with one of the numerous insurance companies that deal with illnesses and accidents and which have a cost starting from a minimum of € 100,00.
Healthcare includes: long-term care for chronic conditions, basic care (general practitioner, short hospitalizations, specialist visits) and supplementary care (aesthetic medicine, dentistry and physiotherapy).
Hospitals fall into three categories: academics with specialized care and research, training for doctors to gain experience and generals dedicated to non-specialized care.
All this involves a very high quality and well organized system.

8 - Denmark

The Danish healthcare system it is public and funded mainly by government taxes; it includes both primary and secondary care and all legally resident citizens can access it for free.
Citizens must pay for medicines, dental care and services such as physiotherapy; services in case of emergencies are free and full coverage is ensured for people in difficulty.
The first contact in case of need is with the family doctor or with the medical guard who will establish the character of the emergency. In his clinic, samples and swabs are also performed and you can only arrive in the emergency room by ambulance or with a card from your doctor.
The services are excellent and both the population and health workers are satisfied.

7 - Iceland

Iceland has a health system that is paid for 85% with taxes and the remaining 15% with service taxes.
In this country there are practically no private hospitals and private insurance companies.
The services include abasic assistance characterized by health centers and family doctors providing primary consultations; then there are hospitals for admissions and specialist visits where most doctors and employees work.
Finally there is thelong-term care which includes home care, nursing homes and childcare institutions.
The staff is well trained and the care is excellent.

6 - Hong Kong

This country has mixed health care characterized by 11 private and 42 public hospitals partially funded by the state. All citizens have the right to public health by contributing small amounts based on benefits.
The quality of medical care is the same in all facilities and the difference between public and private is the level of comfort (choice of doctor, waiting times, etc.) and the cost.
Doctors in Hong Kong are divided into general practitioners who are also experts in acupuncture and phytotherapy and specialist doctors.

5 - Norway

Health care is totally free for children under 16, pregnant women and the elderly with low pensions while all other citizens pay for various services except for hospital admissions.
The financing of the health system is covered 85% by state and local taxes and 15% by patient sharing.
To make you understand, a visit to the family doctor costs € 24,00, a specialist consultation € 41,00, an X-ray € 29,00.
The services are great and the country it is also investing heavily in pharmaceutical research and staff training.

4 - South Korea

This country in a few years has completely upset its health system and has made enormous progress.
Public health is divided into four types of structures: primary including outpatient clinics, clinics and small hospitals; secondary schools characterized by city hospitals; tertiary with hospital polyclinics and finally fourth degree medical centers such as the hospital of the red cross.
The service is free but there are also private paid structures.
The hospitals are large, modern and well equipped and in most cases they also use telemedicine.
Korea is also focusing heavily on staff training and bio-medical, pharmacological and radiological research.

3 - Switzerland

The Swiss health system is universal and regulated by private insurance as there are no free services paid for by the state, but all Swiss citizens must take out compulsory insurance policies.
People have to pay a monthly premium that varies according to the municipality of residence, gender, age and the amount of the annual deductible.
The average cost per month of an adult is 300 francs (€ 280,00) for a basic package that covers treatment in the event of illness or accident and maternity and includes outpatient care, drugs, examinations, physiotherapy.
Depending on the options you choose, then you get up to deductibles of 2.500 francs (€ 2.300) per month that cover complementary treatments.
Switzerland has also initiated a telemedicine program and people can also decide to be assisted in this way.

2 - Japan

In second place is the Japanese health system characterized by one high standard regarding quality of care and people's lifespan.
Health care is covered for about 70% by the state and only the remaining 30% is paid by the client; people are required by law to have insurance that allows them to support that 30%.
This insurance is often paid for by the companies where you work, or you can apply for public subsidies.
In Japan there are specialized clinics usually managed by a single doctor with the help of some nurses (dermatological, pediatric, orthopedic, gynecological clinics .. etc) who almost always visit without an appointment and not for emergencies.
Then there are the hospitals divided by areas and departments also equipped with first aid.
The level is very high and this leads the country to be in second place in the ranking of health systems.

1 - Singapore

At the top of the list is Singapore, a country with about 5.6 million inhabitants who have an average life expectancy of 83 years.
The health system is universal and the government guarantees public care, possible thanks to a mandatory savings system, subsidies and price controls.
All patients are guaranteed to receive treatment from all 24-hour emergency services operated by government hospitals.
In addition, the country has some of the best health facilities in the world where highly qualified medical professionals and nurses, trained in internationally renowned medical institutes, work.
The flagship that won the gold medal in Singapore is that the quality of care is high and low costs because the state controls the tools and machinery used as well as the prices of drugs.

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