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Access to health care in the EU Member States
Foubister T, Busse
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Universal access is usually taken to be a fundamental feature of the health care systems of the European Union (EU) member states. Reform debates in other continents regularly look to the European experience as a model to be emulated or as a showcase for methods of preserving access in contexts of marketization and privatization. In the EU, the principle of universal access is indeed a governing one. It is captured in several country constitutions and health service founding documents, and has been incorporated into the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights as Article 35, whose first part reads ‘Everyone has the right of access to preventive health care and the right to benefit from medical treatment under the conditions established by national laws and practices’.