Global index names Spain world’s healthiest country

Doctors operate on patient in hospital in Andalucía. Archive photo: Europa Press via Público
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Spain has been named the healthiest country in the world, jumping from sixth place to supplant Italy at the top of the Bloomberg Healthiest Country Index 2019, which ranks 169 countries worldwide according to factors contributing to overall health of a country’s population.

The factors considered include life expectancy at birth and environmental factors, such as access to clean water and sanitation, with penalties imposed for high risks such as tobacco use and obesity.

In Spain’s case, the index attributed the improved ranking in part to the quality of public healthcare, particularly preventive services for children, women and elderly patients, as well as acute and chronic care. The study also noted a decline over the past decade of cardiovascular disease and deaths from cancer among the Spanish population.

In the lead of the top ten healthiest countries worldwide, Spain was followed in the 2019 Bloomberg ranking by Italy, Iceland, Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, Australia, Singapore, Norway and Israel. Spain was also ranked third highest worldwide in terms of life expectancy at birth, behind only Japan and and Switzerland.

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