Luxembourg HiT (2015)



The Luxembourgish health system is facing unique challenges amongst EU member states. First, it has the highest per capita health spending in PPP amongst European countries. Secondly, Luxembourg is lacking capacity to train health personnel and is facing shortages in some specialty care, which also necessitates a generous policy towards receiving care abroad.

Reforms in 2008 and 2010 have targeted these challenges by establishing a single health insurance fund envisioned to play a stronger role in cost-containment and introducing e-health. Especially in hospital care there is room for efficiency gains. An average length of stay that remains high, combined with low bed occupancy rates reflect the lack of incentives in the financing mechanism which is based on patient-days from a global hospital budget. Current reforms aim at the implementation of national structured health information system for hospital services, which is prerequisite to further announced reforms such as the introduction of a DRGs based system.

Additionally, patient empowerment was strengthened in 2014, which gave patients the right to receive all relevant information on health status and treatment options. In line with the 2011 European cross-border Directive, patients are now able to obtain information on treatment options abroad and related costs. In 2012, 16 % of patients received care abroad, which is the highest number in the EU and far above the EU average of 4 %.

HiT health system reviews are country-based reports that provide a detailed description of a country's health system and of reform and policy initiatives in progress or under development. More up-to-date information on many countries can be found on our Health Systems and Policy Monitor (HSPM).