The Top 17 Countries for Healthcare

The Top 17 Countries for Healthcare

We’ve partnered with the Legatum Institute, a renowned nonprofit research firm, to find the best healthcare in the world. These countries make up the top 10% of health systems worldwide. Where will the U.S. land on this list?

1) Singapore

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The city-state of Singapore tops the Legatum Prosperity Index (LPI) as the best healthcare system in the world. Its health centers run on a semi-private system, encouraging competition to achieve higher standards and better patient outcomes.

Learn more about moving to Singapore

2) Japan

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Japan established universal health insurance in 1961 when the government established a national fee schedule for medical care. Equity is the key here, with no incentives for doctors to treat patients differently based on social status. Fees are subsidized for the disabled and people in poverty.

Learn more about moving to Japan

3) South Korea

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Koreans enjoy a single-payer universal healthcare system, free to choose their doctors while paying nominal amounts for medical care. South Korea also pays less than a third per capita what the U.S. does for healthcare—$3,000 in Korea, $10,000 in the U.S.

Learn more about moving to South Korea

4) Taiwan

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Taiwan established its single-payer model in 1995, covering all citizens without bias for ability to pay. Taiwanese citizens can still choose their doctors and pay minimal fees. They view universal medical treatment as a vital factor in fighting poverty.

Learn more about moving to Taiwan

5) China

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China rounds out the top 5 on the LPI healthcare rankings. Its public health system covers over 95% of the population, providing basic healthcare to all and offering supplemental insurance for people looking for rapid service.

6) Israel

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Israel views universal healthcare as a human right for its citizens. Israelis pay 3-5% of their income into one of four health service companies, known collectively as Kupot Cholim, and receive cutting-edge medical care that includes mental health and addiction recovery.

7) Norway

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Norway’s citizens enjoy the benefits of socialized medicine. Their universal healthcare is automatic for all residents, keeping care standards high while out-of-pocket costs stay low, compared to the U.S.

Learn more about moving to Norway

8) Iceland

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Iceland also guarantees universal healthcare access by law. All residents rely on state-run health services for minimal cost. In the event that surgical waiting lists run long, the government pays for patients to travel abroad for treatment.

Learn more about moving to Iceland

9) Sweden

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The Swedish Law of Jante philosophy holds that no one is better than anyone else. This approach extends to healthcare, where taxes fund a universal healthcare system that benefits all citizens according to their needs.

Learn more about moving to Sweden

10) Switzerland

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All legal residents in Switzerland must carry basic private insurance; insurers cannot exclude pre-existing conditions or make a profit on basic insurance. The Swiss pay about 8% of their income towards healthcare; annual out-of-pocket medical costs max out around $3,500.

Learn more about moving to Switzerland

11) The Netherlands

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The Netherlands uses a combination of public and private healthcare coverage to treat all residents. Here, the government funds all long-term health treatments, while private insurers manage short-term care needs. like GP visits, hospitalizations, specialists, etc.

Learn more about moving to the Netherlands

12) Luxembourg

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Every resident in Luxembourg (including expats!) can access healthcare services, regardless of their income or employer. This principle of universal coverage and equality for all results in one of the highest life expectancies in Europe—86 years for women, 81 for men.

Learn more about moving to Luxembourg

13) Germany

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Germany extends universal healthcare to its residents, offering free choice in which doctors and hospitals you can use. Health services are low-cost and efficient. The chief medical officer of a German hospital explains their approach well: ” We don’t want patients to worry about money. We want them to worry about getting better.

Learn more about healthcare in Germany

14) Hong Kong

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Just like the rest of mainland China, Hong Kong provided healthcare for everyone at virtually no cost. Expats can access this health system as soon as they reach the city with a valid visa and get their Hong Kong ID card.

15) Finland

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Finland’s healthcare system ranks in the top 10% of countries for one simple reason: they believe everyone deserves proper medical service. Finns guarantee access for all by keeping medical costs low; in 2023, a resident’s out-of-pocket maximum was €592.16 (about $626).

Learn more about moving to Finland

16) Denmark

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Danish citizens enjoy equal access to free healthcare services. This even includes home health care for seniors, an expense that bankrupts American families each year. Denmark’s health system is so efficient that it costs almost half the U.S. approach; Danish healthcare cost 9.5% of GDP in 2022, while the U.S. spent 18.3% of GDP that year.

Learn more about moving to Denmark

17) Italy

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Italy uses a decentralized approach to bring quality healthcare to its population, providing universal coverage that’s free on delivery. Private supplemental insurance helps many families to expand on the government’s generous coverage and rounds out the best countries worldwide for healthcare.

Learn more about moving to Italy

Where does the U.S. rank?

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According the Legatum Institute, the United States doesn’t fall within the top 10% of countries for its healthcare system. It doesn’t even make the top 25%. Out of 165 countries evaluated on the LPI, the U.S. comes in 69th place for healthcare, behind countries like Bahrain (50th), Iran (58th), and Panama (57th). The U.S. healthcare system ranks so low due to high costs, unequal access, and worse health outcomes.

How to Leave America: 6 Steps to Your New Life

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Are you thinking about leaving the United States? You’re not alone; as many as 15% percent of Americans say they want to leave the country permanently.

➤ How to Leave America: 6 Steps to Your New Life

The 20 Best Countries for Americans To Move To, Based on Data

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The Expatsi Test is an assessment tool for Americans who want to leave the United States. It asks the regions they’d like to move to, their budget, the kind of visa they might apply for (like retirement, digital nomad, or skilled worker) and their preferences for things like safety, healthcare, infrastructure, weather, geographical features, and personal freedoms, and reveals the top 10 countries that best meet their needs.

Based on 37,546 respondents in 2023, here are the top 20 countries for American emigrants.

The 20 Best Countries for Americans To Move To, Based on Data

Americans in Mexico Are Happier With Their Healthcare. Here’s Why

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Whether they’re full-time expats or medical tourists, Americans are much happier with the healthcare they receive in Mexico.

According to FarHomes.com, 84% of American expats rate Mexican healthcare as very good or excellent, compared to 72% of non-emigrant Americans who say the healthcare they receive at home is good or excellent.

Here are some of the reasons Americans would rather get care south of the border.

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Co-founder at Expatsi | + posts

Brett Andrews is the co-founder of Expatsi, a company that helps expats discover how to leave the U.S. Brett and his partner Jen developed the Expatsi Test to recommend countries to move to, based on factors like budget, visa type, spoken languages, healthcare rankings, and more. In a former life, he worked as a software developer, IT support specialist, and college educator. When he's not working, Brett loves watching comic book movies and reading unusual books.

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Banner Affiliates Expatsi 10Disc 1080x1080 1 jpg
bed49dc5d4263d6d37b46cb09574d411?s=150&d=mp&r=g
Co-founder at Expatsi | + posts

Brett Andrews is the co-founder of Expatsi, a company that helps expats discover how to leave the U.S. Brett and his partner Jen developed the Expatsi Test to recommend countries to move to, based on factors like budget, visa type, spoken languages, healthcare rankings, and more. In a former life, he worked as a software developer, IT support specialist, and college educator. When he's not working, Brett loves watching comic book movies and reading unusual books.