About the project

A multi-donor project led by WHO/Europe and the European Commission

In 2007 the WHO Regional Office for Europe together with the European Commission commenced a joint action on inequalities in health-system performance and their social determinants in Europe with the two objectives of:

  • mapping health inequalities in the European Union and selected neighbouring countries based on a range of Eurostat indicator datasets (demographic, socioeconomic, health resources, mortality and hospitalization admission dimensions), available on a regional level; and
  • developing resources to assist policy-makers in taking action, based on current and past examples of health system action across Europe, and building on the evidence from the global Commission on Social Determinants of Health and its knowledge networks.

This has resulted in the development of the following products:

  • an interactive system of atlases of health inequalities in Europe with the following tools being developed.
  • a web-based resource of examples of health system action that can be taken to tackle SDHI as part of an overall approach to the health system putting its own house in order.
  • a companion publication – Putting our own house in order: examples of health-system action on socially determined health inequalities.
  • six policy issues briefings.

This work has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union.  The views expressed can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the European Union.

The “Inequalities in health system performance and their social determinants in Europe” project was undertaken by a project team at the WHO Regional Office for Europe, Copenhagen and the WHO European Office for Investment for Health and Development, Venice: Mr Andrea Bertola, Ms Theadora Koller, Dr Enrique Loyola, Dr Anatoliy Nosikov (retired), Dr Ivo Rakovac, Mr Steffen Schillinger and Ms Sarah Simpson.

In addition, a range of stakeholders outside of the WHO Regional Office including WHO Collaborating Centres were involved in the development of the products for the health equity initiative, particularly the examples for the web-based resource and the publication.