Only Mexico spends proportionately less on health care than Iceland, amongst all other OECD countries. Iceland has scarcely increased its budget allocations to health care, while Icelandic households have been paying more for it.
RÚV reports that from 2005 to 2009, Iceland only increased its budget allocations to health care by about 0.4% per year, on average. During this same period of time, Denmark increased its health care spending by 4% per year on average, and Norway and Sweden increased their health care spending by 2% each.
Meanwhile, household expenditures to health care have increased dramatically in recent years. In the 1980s, the average Icelandic household spent from 8% to 10% of its income on health care. In the past three years, by contrast, Icelandic households have been spending about 19% of their income on health care.
As it stands now, Iceland is second only to Mexico amongst OECD countries in terms of spending the least on health care, proportionately speaking.
A recent petition from deCODE CEO Kári Stefánsson to increase the health care budget to 11% has gathered the signatures of close to 87,000 Icelanders, making it one of the most-signed petitions in Icelandic history.