The European health report 2015. Targets and beyond – Reaching new frontiers in evidence. Highlights






2015, iv + 11 pages
ISBN 978 92 890 1431 1
This publication is only available online.

The publication of the European health report every three years gives readers – including policy-makers, politicians, public health specialists and journalists – a vital snapshot of health in the WHO European Region and progress towards health and well-being for all. The report also shows trends in and progress towards the goals of Health 2020, the European health policy, and reveals some gaps in progress, inequalities and areas of concern and uncertainty, where action must be taken.

This publication presents highlights from the 2015 European health report. It shows continuing improvements in health throughout the Region and decreases in some of the inequalities in health between countries, notably in life expectancy and infant mortality; nevertheless, these differences still amount to 11 years of life and 20 healthy babies per 1000 live births between the best- and worst-performing countries. Absolute differences between countries remain unacceptably large, especially for indicators linked to social determinants of health, and the European Region still has the highest rates of alcohol consumption and tobacco smoking in the world. 

This publication also gives highlights of the first results on subjective well-being in the context of Health 2020, and summarizes innovative approaches that will support policy-makers in addressing the challenge of measuring it. It addresses notions included in Health 2020, such as community resilience and a sense of belonging and empowerment, and indicates directions for the fresh thinking about health information needed to ensure that the evidence collated meets the needs of the policy. Finally, this publication calls for broad international cooperation to harmonize, set standards for and create evidence fit for use in the 21st century.