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EACEA National Policies Platform: Youthwiki
Republic of North Macedonia

Republic of North Macedonia

7. Health and Well-Being

7.1 General context

On this page
  1. Main trends in the health conditions of young people
  2. Main concepts

Main trends in the health conditions of young people

Since the independence in 1991, Republic of North Macedonia has made important progress during its transition from a socialist system to a market-based system, particularly in reforming the organization, financing and delivery of health care and establishing a mix of private and public providers. Although total health care expenditure has risen in absolute terms in recent decades, it has consistently fallen as share of GDP, and high levels of private health expenditure remain. Despite this, the health of the population has improved over the last decades, with life expectancy and mortality rates for both adults and children reaching similar levels to those in ex-communist EU countries, though death rates caused by unhealthy behavior remain high.

There are new numbers that are determining the indicators that show the mortality rate and the life expectancy of the citizens of North Macedonia for 2020. The mortality rate in 2020 is 10.200 deaths per 1000 people, a 0.91% increase from 2019. [1] Related to the life expectancy rates, the current data from the for the North Macedonia show that the life expectancy of the males is 74.38, females 79.85 and the total life expectancy in the country is 77.01 [2]

Data on health conditions of young people is not systematically collected, particularly on behavior related variables. However, there are numerous studies done in the past that can provide an insight into health status of youth in the Republic of North Macedonia. The latest behavioral study done in 2008[3] showed that students in North Macedonia face a number of health problems related to behaviors, e.g. dietary behavior, tobacco use, use of alcohol, sexual behavior, violence and injury risk behavior. The survey also showed that such behaviors are not simply the actions of individuals, but take place in a social context, such as lack of education about prevention in schools. The survey highlights health issues that were known but insufficiently studied and acted upon, but has also brought other problems to light, such as mental health problems of adolescents requiring urgent attention, more prevention and more support efforts.

According to the data of the Public Health Institute of the Republic of North Macedonia in 2017, boys aged 15 to 24 who are victims of unintentional injuries are most often injured due to use of alcohol and loss of control over behavior.[4] Additionally, the traffic accidents are determined as the most frequent reason for the mortality of the young population (15-29) [5]

Furthermore, according to the Report of the Health Care Department for School Children and Youth 2017, the most common cause of youth morbidity is respiratory diseases (40.6%).[6]

Main concepts

Health is defined in accordance with World Health Organisation definition as a state of complete physical and mental wellbeing and not merely absence of disease or infirmity. It is considered to be influenced by many external factors such as environmental, social and economic factors, and by factors related to lifestyles and to other sectors in the society.

health system definition fully complies with the World Health Organisation definition, as including all the actors and activities the primary purpose of which is to promote, improve or maintain the health of the citizens. It includes organised health services, i.e. the health care system, as only one of the many factors for maintaining good health, recovering from ill health, or making the life with chronic illness easier.