Is our healthcare spending as a percentage of GDP about 8%?
I refer to the article “Singapore Budget 2018: Spending needs to grow in healthcare, infrastructure, security and education” (Business Times, Feb 18).
It states that “All in all, we expect our average annual healthcare spending to rise from 2.2 per cent of GDP today to almost 3 per cent of GDP over the next decade. This is an increase of nearly 0.8-percentage point of GDP, or about S$3.6 billion in today’s dollars. Within the next decade, healthcare spending is expected to overtake education.”
Since I understand that Singapore”s public healthcare spending is about a third of total healthcare spending – does it mean that total healthcare spending may be about 6.6% (2.2% x 3) of GDP?
Since annual Medisave contributions are I understand more than $10 billion – and it is in a sense like an implicit tax or akin to a pre-paid health insurance contribution – does it mean that total healthcare spending, from a cashflow perspective, may be about 8%?
In contrast, the United Kingdom’s healthcare spending as a percentage of GDP is about 7.4% in 2017, and the share of public healthcare spending is about 83.2%, compared to about a third in Singapore.
Leong Sze Hian