In 2019, Switzerland spent an estimated CHF 1.8 billion on prevention and health promotion (PHP). Between 2010 and 2019, this expenditure accounted for between 2.2% and 2.7% of all health care costs (see indicator “Expenditure on PHP by service”).

Half of PHP expenditure is privately funded, either by private households or other private providers such as the Swiss Red Cross or the health leagues. The Confederation, cantons and communes bear around a third of this expenditure, although the differences between cantons are considerable. The social insurances fund roughly a fifth of this expenditure.

This indicator is part of the Monitoring System Addiction and NCD (MonAM) of the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH).

Assigned topic

Healthy ageing is an important objective of the Federal Council’s Health 2030 Strategy. People of all age groups should encounter conditions favourable to a healthy life. This should also allow the unfavourable cost trend in the health care system to be curtailed. Investments in PHP make an important contribution towards achieving these goals. The amount of expenditure in PHP serves as an indicator to assess the effectiveness of measures on the population’s health. Studies (Wieser et al., 2010; Bertram et al., 2018) show that every franc invested in PHP achieves a positive return.


The indicator shows the percentage share of PHP expenditure in total health cost expenditure in Switzerland in respect of the following eight financing schemes: The Confederation, cantons, communes, compulsory health insurance (COPH), invalidity insurance (IV), accident insurance (UV), private households and other private providers. PHP expenditure by the cantons and communes are also shown as a percentage of a canton’s and its communes’ total health care expenditure.

The indicator is calculated on the basis of the Federal Statistical Office’s (FSO) “Health care costs and financing statistics”, analysing monetary flows in the area of “prevention”. The statistics present a synthesis of all available figures for an estimation of the monetary flows associated with the production, consumption and financing of goods and services of the Swiss health system during one year. The expenditure includes both material and personnel costs. The data are updated annually.

The range of preventive and health promoting services in Switzerland is very diverse. It includes, amongst other things, measures in the areas of addiction, prevention of non-communicable diseases, health care in schools, accident and injury prevention, food security, organisation and administration of state PHP efforts, vaccination programmes, advice on and testing of communicable diseases, or disease monitoring. There is, however, no uniformly applied definition as to what comes under prevention or health promotion. In addition to this, Switzerland’s 26 independent cantons finance their own prevention and health promotion. All this makes it difficult to assign data in a uniform manner. For this reason, this indicator can only make an approximate estimate of PHP expenditure.



  • Bertram, M.Y. et al. (2018). Investing in non-communicable diseases: an estimation of the return on investment for prevention and treatment services. The Lancet. 391 (10134): 2071-2078: Study.
  • Wieser, S. et al. (2010). Synthesebericht – Ökonomische Evaluation von Präventionsmassnahmen in der Schweiz. Report commissioned by the Federal Office of Public Health. Winterthur Institute of Health Economics (WIG), Zurich University of Applied Sciences Winterthur (ZHAW) and the Institute for Economic Research (IRENE), University of Neuchâtel: Report (in German and French).

Further information

  • Gmeinder, M. et al. (2017): How much do OECD countries spend on prevention?, OECD Health Working Papers, No. 101, DOI: 10.1787/f19e803c-en: Study.

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