EUROPEAN PAPERS ON THE NEW WELFARE

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Health Care System in the Industrialised Countries and the Role of Private Insurance

1. Introduction

In the industrialised economies, health plays a central role in the individual scale of values. As a result of the advances in medicine that have generated new expectations in the fight against disease, the demand for quality of life has become part of our daily experience. Citizens no longer accept the inevitability of illness and absolutely reject sickness and pain.
Governments are faced with a new scenario: on the one hand, citizens are prioritizing the quality of health care services, on the other health costs are constantly on the rise, as a result of scientific and technological developments in medicine and an aging population. These are the main forces behind the demand for additional health care services, the increased cost of which is to be borne by the State.
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