£810 / $1295 / €985
The Netherlands has a well developed, comparatively mature medical device market, which is valued at US$3.3 million in 2012, equal to US$198 per capita.
The economic downturn, which resulted in a 1.1% contraction in the economy in 2012, has further increased financial pressures on the health service, which ran up sizeable deficits in 2009 and 2010.
The volume of routine elective surgery continues to increase albeit with strong downward pressure on costs. Independent treatment centres are continuing to increase their share of the market.
A liberal-labour coalition between the People's Party of Freedom and Democracy (PVVD) and the Labour Party (PvdA) as replaced the right-wing minority coalition between the PVVD and the Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA), following
elections in September 2012. The new coalition is broadly centrist and pro-euro. However, consensus will need to be found on budget cuts and the best way to tackle soaring healthcare costs.
Edith Schippers of the PVVD retains the portfolio of Health, Welfare and Sport in the cabinet that was appointed on 5th November 2012.
The Netherlands has a long history of providing accessible healthcare, although resources are comparatively low for a west European country. A mandatory health insurance scheme was introduced in January 2006. This replaced the
previous two-tier system and provides basic health insurance cover for acute care services with a separate scheme for long term medical care.
The new health insurance act has substantially increased price competition amongst insurers and healthcare providers resulting in one of the most market-oriented healthcare systems in Europe.
Due to the nature and position of the Netherlands, it has been used as a ‘trading post’ for many years. For this reason, the value of imports and exports do not necessarily reflect the market movement.
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