Denmark is located in Northern Europe. It is the oldest monarchy in the world. Its system of government is based on a multi-party structure so that several parties can be represented in the parliament (Folketinget) at the same time. It occupies a privileged position in the workplace, representing the highest employment rate in Europe. In recent years, it has been classified as the best country for doing business in Europe and the third best in the world. That much? And in health?
As for the education system, it represents 9 years of compulsory and free education (primary and secondary school). University studies are also free and also pay.
Health services provided to citizens are free, with the exception of the pharmacy (patients pay the total price of drugs until the limit is reached, then pay a decreasing co-payment amount until the second limit is reached, after which the costs are fully covered), dentistry (free care up to 18 years old) , physiotherapy and podiatry (2/5 of the bill is paid). All this includes persons who are temporarily in the country; persons who are not registered (residents, undocumented immigrants or uncovered non-community visitors) can access the use of health services, but assume all the costs thereof. And yes, dear reader, I too reacted like this: Wow!
In more than 99% of the population, the patient is assigned a specific primary care physician and has the right to free medical assistance from the same and other specialists with a prior referral from the primary care physician. , so far it is similar to our system.
This system is free for the patient, they simply have to identify themselves through their health card (here we ask for a CURP or social security number). Doctors carry out their work inside health centers (lægehuset). Many family doctors in Denmark are about to retire and therefore there is a shortage of top doctors.
In 2020, there were almost 3,500 family doctors in all of Denmark, and it is also interesting to note that as of this year, there are more women than men.
Among the doctor’s functions is also to guarantee the inclusion of his patients in preventive programs: carrying out cytological examinations and mammography, referral to different specialists, monitoring of medications (for example, all patients on opiates must be examined at least once a year to guarantee the need or not to continue treatment ), perform additional tests and check.
In addition, from the first level you can request complementary tests such as CT and MRI, as well as a wide variety of analytical tests (always with an adequate explanation of their need), unlike in Mexico where they must first be evaluated by a specific specialist and their deputy director. We must point out that in the Danish healthcare culture, the primary care physician is highly recognized and enjoys a high reputation, as he is considered a fundamental link within the healthcare system.
Rehabilitation is also part of primary health care. Municipalities offer a comprehensive rehabilitation program for all citizens who need it, including physical and mental training programs and other measures aimed at restoring functional abilities such as self-care and healthy lifestyle habits through centers specialized in learning healthy lifestyle habits and active job search, between others.
Without a doubt, Denmark has, among other things, an excellent healthcare system. Although structurally it might be similar to ours, it is culturally very far away. Perhaps, when we reach the cultural level of the Nordic countries, we will be able to aspire to a healthcare system like theirs. In the meantime, we keep trying.