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NHS IS EURO FLOP.

Byline: EMILY COOK

THE NHS has been ranked a lowly 14th in an annual league table of European healthcare.

It was pipped by Ireland in 13th but a long way behind top-placed Holland, runners-up Denmark and Iceland in third.

The Euro Health Consumer Index measures medical provision across 33 European countries using patient data, including access to medicines, and information provision.

Despite improving from 17th last year the NHS was penalised this time round for poor waiting times and patchy overall quality. The health department yesterday insisted the result was based on old data and failed to take account of recent improvements.

A spokesman said: "The NHS is treating more people and saving more lives than at any time in its history with waiting times at their lowest levels since records began."

Holland is the only country which has consistently ranked in the top three in the five years the survey has been carried out.

Lowest ranked was Bulgaria's health service.
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 29, 2009
Words:161
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