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The Norwegian health care system is semi-decentralized. Primary care and long-term care (LTC) are the responsibilities of the municipalities. Specialist care is the…
The Norwegian health care system is semi-decentralized. Primary care and long-term care (LTC) are the responsibilities of the municipalities. Specialist care is the responsibility of the central government and is organised through four Regional Health Authorities (RHA). Resource use, health outcomes and severity are the three main pillars for priority setting, regularly applied in reimbursement decisions for pharmaceuticals.
The sustainability of health care is challenged in Norway. The main factors are a growing elderly population with high need of complex, coordinated services, an increasing demand for newly approved drugs and advanced technology and a potential shortage of health care personnel.
We present recent trials and policy reforms in Norway aimed at improving care pathways combined with cost containment. Reforms in the pharmaceutical market, both with regard to market access and reimbursement (cost-effectiveness), and regulation of prices, have resulted in cost containment. The primary care sector awaits reform initiatives to recruit and retain physicians as general practitioners. No reform in the hospital sector has had cost containment as a main focus. The sector is characterized with low productivity growth, and expenditures that have increased more than the GDP growth. Waiting times are long, and coordination between sub-sectors of health care has been poor, although the Coordination reform of 2012 has alleviated some of the challenges related to intersectoral coordination. Still, the divided responsibility for health care between the central government and the municipalities creates tensions between national ambitions and local decisions in the financing and provision of health services.
Misinterpretation of a negative test results in health screening may initiate less preventive effort and more future lifestyle-related disease. We predict that…
Misinterpretation of a negative test results in health screening may initiate less preventive effort and more future lifestyle-related disease. We predict that misinterpretation occurs more frequently among individuals with a low level of education compared with individuals with a high level of education.
The empirical analyses are based on unique data from a randomized controlled screening experiment in Norway, NORCCAP (NORwegian Colorectal Cancer Prevention). The dataset consists of approximately 50,000 individuals, of whom 21,000 were invited to participate in a once only screening with sigmoidoscopy. For all individuals, we also have information on outpatient consultations and inpatient stays and education. The result of health behaviour is mainly measured by lifestyle-related diseases, such as COPD, hypertension and diabetes type 2, identified by ICD-10 codes.
The results according to intention-to-treat indicate that screening does not increase the occurrence of lifestyle related diseases among individuals with a high level of education, while there is an increase for individuals with low levels of education. These results are supported by the further analyses among individuals with a negative screening test.