International comparisons of health care systems offer valuable tools to health ministers, policymakers, and academics wishing to evaluate the performance of their country's system. The data can point to areas in which a country is doing well or poorly relative to others and areas where it is simply making different choices.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is an international organization representing 30 industrialized countries that share a commitment to democracy and a market economy. The OECD produces reports and data on a wide range of economic and social issues, including the OECD Health Data series, an annual release of data on various aspects of health and health care in the member countries. Working with statistical offices in each member country, the OECD produces the most accurate and comprehensive international health care data available on the 30 nations.