OECD: Health at a Glance 2015

Health at a Glance 2015
OECD Indicators


This 2015 edition of Health at a Glance – OECD Indicators presents the most recent comparable data on key indicators of health and health systems across the 34 OECD member countries. For a subset of indicators, it also reports data for partner countries.

From the Executive Summary

Health at a Glance 2015 presents cross-country comparisons of the health status of populations and the performance of health systems in OECD countries, candidate countries and key emerging economies.

The key findings of this publication are as follows.

New drugs will push up pharmaceutical spending unless policy adapts

Life expectancy continues to rise, but widespread differences persist across countries and socio-demographic groups

The number of doctors and nurses has never been higher in OECD countries

Out-of-pocket spending remains a barrier to accessing care

Too many lives are still lost because quality of care is not improving fast enough

Health at a Glance 2015 (Read online version - 220 pages):

Health at a Glance 2015 (links to PDFs of each section):



By Don McCanne, M.D.

Opponents of health care reform frequently dismiss efforts with the statement that the United States has the best health care system in the world. We don’t. This biennial report of OECD indicators provides international comparisons with tables and graphs that can be very useful in explaining why the United States needs to get serious with our health care reform efforts. It is shameful that we fall far behind our peer nations in so many of the crucial health indicators.

The second link above is particularly helpful since you can readily select international comparisons on whichever topic you want, such as infant mortality, overweight and obesity among children, international migration of nurses, out-of-pocket medical expenditure, and so forth.

Fixing our health care financing system alone will not solve all of our problems, but a single payer system would give us a much better infrastructure on which to function.