When it comes to quality of health care, the Netherlands performs very well. Our care system is one of the best, but also one of the most expensive in Europe. How can we make sure that health care will remain sustainable in the future? The Netherlands Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR) tries to answer this question in the research project ‘Sustainable Health Care’.

People generally describe good health as one of the most important conditions for a good life. Health care contributes to an ever rising life expectancy, and helps us to stay active and productive. Accessible, high-quality care is thus of great societal importance. But our health care system is under increasing pressure. An ageing society, chronic disorders, stress and technological developments lead to an ever increasing demand for care, driving rapidly rising expenditure and ever increasing pressure on health care professionals and informal carers.

In 2018, the ministers of Finance and of Medical Care and Sport have therefore requested the WRR to prepare a comprehensive advice on the long-term sustainability of health care, addressing both societal and financial-economic aspects.

Wat do we expect of our health care? How much can that cost, and how are we going to decide? What are the societal benefits? How do we keep health care sustainable in the long run? Starting January 2019, the WRR will study these question in the project Sustainable Health Care.