The Bertelsmann Stiftung is committed to helping create a high-quality healthcare system based on the principle of social solidarity that provides everyone with the medical services they require, regardless of background. Healthcare provision must focus on health plan members, since, as patients, they use the system and, by paying insurance premiums and taxes, they fund it. As a result, they expect both high-quality care and transparency.
In light of rising costs, policymakers are examining ways to increase competition within the healthcare system. To ensure that quality does not suffer, providers must compete to give the best care, i.e. medically sound, cost-effective treatment that reflects what patients need and want. Successful strategies for improving quality of care must therefore focus on concepts such as quality management, evidence-based medicine and integrated care. To that end, international best practices can be helpful in identifying solutions.more
Patients are increasingly being viewed as proactive co-participants in efforts to ensure their own good health. Yet they can only take on the role of responsible, empowered consumers when the healthcare system focuses on what they actually need and when necessary changes to the system are communicated clearly. Unbiased, easily understood information is also required if individuals are to become active users of the system, and feedback from health plan members must be taken into account during policymaking processes.more
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