Tuesday, June 12, 2012

[EQ] Dimensions of health care system quality in Finland

Dimensions of health care system quality in Finland

Pääkkönen, Jenni  ; Seppälä, Timo 

VATT Working Papers 31  - May 2012 - Valtion taloudellinen tutkimuskeskus

Government Institute for Economic Research - Helsinki 2012

Available online PDF [40p.] at: http://bit.ly/KlzFqA

“……This paper evaluates the determinants of quality - cost relationship in primary health care. We first summarize information from various indicators of care by principal component analysis (PCA), effectively producing quality of care indicators: accessibility, coverage and allocative efficiency.

We then regress the costs of care against these indicators to evaluate their relationship. Our results suggest that PCA may be used to produce quality of care indicators. Furthermore, the relationship between the costs and quality of care is complex. Better accessibility is reflected in higher costs, whereas the efficient allocation of resources will bring some cost savings. …”

“……….The main task of a public health care system is to maintain and yield health among the citizens. However, government budgets are tight and the increase in health care expenses together with aging does not help to consolidate the budgets.

Decision makers may be able to minimize the increase in health care expenses by allocating resources efficiently. However, policies are not alike: some cost-saving policies may harm the quality of care, while other policies may leave quality intact.

To evaluate the influence of cost-savings on quality, one needs first a measurement of quality, and second, the relationship between costs and quality should be verified.

Most health economic research focusing on quality-cost issues has concentrated on fragments of health care (e.g. cardiac diseases, diabetes treatments), whereas given the weak economic prospects of governments, one should rather study the possibility of revealing a link between quality and costs at the system level. In this paper, we attempt to measure the quality of care at the system level. We also evaluate whether costs are systematically associated with quality. Finnish data from primary health care facilitate the contemplation of these issues empirically……..”



1 Introduction

2 Quality of care indicators

3 Methods

4 Results

5 Discussion

A Appendix: data

B Appendix: results



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1 comment:

Steve Salmony said...

If we choose to review the perspective of a 'marketwatcher' who can see what is actually before our eyes, perhaps all of us can get a little more reality-oriented to the world we inhabit and a less deceived by an attractive, flawed ideology that is highly touted and widely shared but evidently illusory and patently unsustainable.