The Belgian health system covers almost the entire population for a wide range of health services. Residents must be affiliated to a sickness fund of their choice or to the public auxiliary fund; and contributions are proportional to income. Belgium is among the top ten spenders on health across EU countries, reaching 10.7% of GDP in 2019. With relatively high public spending on health, households’ out-of-pocket payments amounted to 18.2%, spent mainly on non-reimbursed services, official co-payments and extra-billings.
The Belgian population enjoys good health and long life expectancy. This is partly due to the population’s good access to many high-quality health services. Over the next few years, major measures are expected to be introduced in Belgium to continue improving the quality of care and efficiency of the health system. Among them are the continuation of the hospital landscape reform, the mental health care reforms, the integrated care projects, the development of a national health research system and the reform of the national fee schedule, Following the COVID-19 crisis, deliberations on how to improve the resilience of the health system are also underway.
From European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, 2022