Financing Long-Term Care in Southwest Europe: Italy, Portugal and Spain

  • Joan Costa-Font
  • Cristiano Gori
  • Silvina Santana


The progressive ageing of the European population and the transformation of family care giving arrangements bring to the fore the question of how best to Finance long-term care (LTC). Particularly important is the specific financial organization of LTC systems when both social and demographic constraints compete with economic motivations to rationalize public insurance schemes. LTC provides support for old age dependants that need some health care, but primarily social care. However, Southern European countries are facing the paradox of health care being a top policy priority as in almost all European countries, whilst social care is nearly privatized or has been heavily decentralized to local authorities, and subject to means- as well as needs-testing (Costa-Font and Font-Vilalta, 2006; Gil, 2009; CostaFont, 2010a; Santana, 2010). Private financing is primarily dominated by intra-household interactions and self Financing. The role of private financing alternatives is developing in some countries such as Spain, but is still far from taking off.


Informal Care Social Care Residential Care Residential Home Local Health Authority 
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Copyright information

© Joan Costa-Font, Cristiano Gori and Silvina Santana 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joan Costa-Font
    • 1
  • Cristiano Gori
    • 1
  • Silvina Santana
    • 2
  1. 1.London School of Economics and Political ScienceUK
  2. 2.Department of Economics, Management and Industrial Engineering & Institute of Electronics Engineering and Telematics of AveiroUniversity of AveiroPortugal

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