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World Health Organization Publication : Year 2003 ; Issue 9241562498 - Costa - Rica: Case-Study ; Costa Rica

By Felicia Knaul

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Book Id: WPLBN0000174491
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.2 MB
Reproduction Date: 2005
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Title: World Health Organization Publication : Year 2003 ; Issue 9241562498 - Costa - Rica: Case-Study ; Costa Rica  
Author: Felicia Knaul
Language: English
Subject: Health., Public health, Wellness programs
Collections: Medical Library Collection, World Health Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: World Health Organization


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Knaul, F. (n.d.). World Health Organization Publication : Year 2003 ; Issue 9241562498 - Costa - Rica. Retrieved from

Medical Reference Publication

1.1 Preamble Although considered to be a lower–middle income country and ranked 69th in the world according to GDP per capita, Costa Rica was included in 1999 among the 35 countries with the highest Human Development Index. This situation could be explained by the existence of a Welfare State and the implementation of social programmes during the second half of the twentieth century. The social reform initiated in 1942 created a public and centralized security system managed by the Caja Costarricense del Seguro Social (CCSS). The CCSS was responsible for the provision and financing of health care services. Even though the CCSS was created in the early 1940s, the universal and compulsory character of social insurance coverage was not established by law until the 1970s. In this decade of the 1970s, and for the first time, a National Health Plan was implemented to redefine the functions of the CCSS and the Ministry of Health. The former was more oriented towards care, and the second to public health promotion and disease prevention. All hospitals were transferred to the control of CCSS. The Costa Rican social security system has played a principal role in the country’s human development. Comparing the health performance of Costa Rica with that of other Latin American countries, this country has the highest life expectancy for males (73.8) and the second highest for females (78.6). The rate of malnutrition for children under five years is the lowest in the region for boys, and the second lowest for girls. Infant mortality is the second lowest, after Cuba, and health access is only superior in the Bahamas and Barbados while maternal mortality is lower only in Barbados (WH0, 1999).

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