The Dutch health care performance report: seven-year analysis

The Netherlands was one of the first countries in the world to develop a performance framework for the Dutch health care system. Work began in 2002 and the first Dutch Health Care Performance Report was published in 2006. Tracking 125 performance indicators reporting on the quality, accessibility, and costs of the Dutch health care system, it is published every two years in Dutch and English (with twice a year updates on the website) and now serves as a model for other countries.

In 2011, the MUHC-ISAI invited Mr. Gert Westert, co-editor of the first three Reports, to talk about the Report’s role in monitoring the impact of health care reform.

In January 2014, Michael J van den Berg from the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment in The Netherlands  published an analysis The Dutch health care performance report: seven years of health care performance assessment in the Netherlands that reviews how it was created, how it is used, what impact it has on health care and what lessons it holds for other countries. Among his findings:

  • the report allows for a constant dialogue between policymakers and researchers and serves both accountability and agenda-setting functions.
  • the Dutch Ministry of Health uses the Report as a solid empirical foundation for policy; the Minister uses the report to present accomplishments and challenges to Parliament.
  • one of the strengths of the report is that is monitors different perspectives on a same question, not least the experience of patients.