Health: The Danish Model and Life Expectancy

The Story:

In Denmark, the national government has direct control of healthcare, which is a nationalized industry. The government creates plans and regulations and allocates funding out of tax revenues to the regions and municipalities for their implementation. Regions control hospitalized care, while municipalities control home care, prevention, rehabilitation, and public health.


Denmark’s citizens live an average of 81.3 years. A Danish man 65 years old can expect to live another 18 years; a woman at 65 can expect to live another 20.7 years.

For purposes of comparison: in the United States, at birth, life expectancy is 78.79 years. An American man at 65 can expect to live another 18.2 years: a woman of that age, 20.8. So, although there is a two-and-a-half-year difference at birth, the life expectancy in the U.S. at 65 is virtually the same as that in Denmark for each sex.

In Pill Form:

One of the consequences of a centralized government run health care system is that there is no room in Denmark for the attitude “I will make my own decisions and accept the consequences: everyone else should leave me alone!” Any decision that could affect your health at any stage of life is a matter of the public fisc and so of public concern.



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