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Quantitative evaluation of healthcare investments

The evaluation undertaken by HÉTFA Research Institute, Budapest Institute and Revita Foundation focuses on the development of outpatient care, the formation of a centralized register of medical equipments, and the support of programmes promoting a healthier lifestyle. The study also provides a general overview of utilisation and territorial distribution of health development funds in Hungary. In this project, the role of Budapest Institute was to conduct a separate econometric analysis to review these programmes in terms of territorial targeting, direct outcomes and results in terms of take-up and access, and to assess their short term economic and health impacts. As for the latter, the change in take-up rates of in- and outpatient care, as well as the impact of the interventions upon the number of sick days was analysed in detail.

The evaluation revealed that developmental funds contributed to the public policy goal to shift provision, if medically not contraindicated, from inpatient to outpatient care. The territorial targeting of funds was also adequate. The population of micro-regions with worse health indicators received more additional resources than their share of recurrent flows of health care spending. The main recommendations of our evaluation pertain to the regulatory and financial systems, management of human resource-related challenges in health care, and the monitoring of health care institutions.

A follow-up paper by our researchers, published in the journal Health Economics (A free-access earlier version is available here), found a 24-27 per cent increase of case numbers thanks to the new outpatient centres being set up. Specialty-by-specialty estimates implied that a one-minute reduction of travel time to the nearest outpatient unit increases case numbers e.g. by 0.9 percent in internal care and 3.1 per cent in rheumatology.

Project details
Project leader Balázs Váradi
Duration02/07/2012 - 20/03/2013
Quantitative evaluation fo healthcare development projects of the NSRF (full report in Hungarian)
study Quantitative evaluation of healthcare development projects of the NSRF (summary report)
Survey of preventable deaths through healthcare services in 174 small regions, 2005-2007 (annex in Hungarian)