Which Countries Have the Most Expensive Healthcare?

Have you ever thought about the cost of healthcare around the world? People do not give it too much thought in the UK as a result of the NHS providing publicly funded healthcare, but often people will still end up out of pocket as a result of an injury like a broken bone.

However, if you plan to expand your business internationally and employ or contract with people in those trading countries, it is worth being aware of just how much basic and emergency healthcare can cost elsewhere. What situations may your partners and contractors face? Here is a quick summary of some of the countries around the world with the most expensive healthcare.

A Recent Study

This is something that was recently analysed by accident claim specialists the National Accident Helpline, who discovered some interesting results when looking at the cost of medical care for a broken bone. Many of these medical costs will either be partially or fully covered by a universal healthcare system, but this is not true of everywhere with America being the most notable country.

USA the Most Expensive

It is the USA that came out as the most expensive country in the world to treat a broken leg when purely looking at medical costs. The average came out at the equivalent of £25,550 which is 7.5 times more than medical costs in the UK for the same injury (£3,363). It is understandable that people would look to a personal injury claim if they suffer an accident that was not their fault.

Other countries that were expensive when it comes to treating a broken leg include Spain at £15,000 and Singapore at £10,396. At the other end of the table, the UAE (£2,094), Argentina (£2,378) and India (£2,555) were the places with the lowest medical costs to treat a broken leg.

Out-of-Pocket Costs

Even when a universal healthcare system covers some or all of the costs of medical treatment, the WHO reports that patients still end up out of pocket as a result of medical care. These are expenses paid at the point of use as well as any money paid for private healthcare given outside of the universal healthcare system.

India Pay the Highest Percentage Out-of-Pocket

Looking at these out-of-pocket expenses, India pay the highest rate of out-of-pocket healthcare costs with 63% of medical costs equating to £33 to the patient. Vietnam pay 45% of healthcare costs out of pocket equating to £50 per patient while Mexico comes in third at 42% and £160. 

Costly Places for Healthcare

Interestingly, the US only pay 11% out-of-pocket but the high cost of medical care means that the average personal cost is £838 (the second-highest figure). Switzerland had the highest out-of-pocket costs at an eye-watering £2,016 paying 31% of healthcare costs out of pocket. Swiss patients also pay £4,956 towards private healthcare insurance each year equating to 69% of the total cost of healthcare (a higher percentage than any other country).

It is interesting to see the cost of medical care around the world and it is clear that there is a significant difference in different parts of the world. The lesson for those of us in the UK is to make sure that you have comprehensive healthcare insurance when you work or travel abroad and to work with partners and contractors in those countries to help mitigate the impact of health emergencies.