Austrian health targets

The 10 Austrian health targets were developed with the aim to prolong the healthy life years of all people living in Austria within 20 years (until 2032), irrespective of their level of education, income or personal living condition.

Since population health is profoundly influenced and determined by many sectors outside the health care sector, the Austrian health targets were defined in a broad and participatory process that involves more than 40 stakeholders from relevant institutions and civil society.

In 2011 the Bundesgesundheitskommission (Federal Health Commission) and the Austrian Council of Ministers requested the development of health targets at federal level. The targets were then formulated by all relevant stakeholders that are part of the process. The 10 health targets were officially approved by the Bundesgesundheitskommission and the Council of Ministers in summer 2012. They were mentioned in two government programmes and are an important basis for the health reform process.

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Gemeinsam gesundheitsförderliche Lebens- und Arbeitsbedingungen schaffen

Target 1:
To provide health-promoting living and working conditions for all population groups through cooperation of all societal and political areas

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Gesundheitliche Chancengerechtigkeit für alle Menschen in Österreich sicherstellen

Target 2:
To promote fair and equal opportunities in health, irrespective of gender, socio-economic group, ethnic origin and age

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Gesundheitskompetenz der Bevölkerung stärken

Target 3:
To enhance health literacy in the population

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Target 4:
To secure sustainable natural resources such as air, water and soil and healthy environments for future generations

Symbol für das Gesundheitsziel 5 Durch sozialen Zusammenhalt die Gesundheit stärken, copyright: BMSGPK

Target 5:
To strengthen social cohesion as a health enhancer

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Gesundes Aufwachsen für Kinder und Jugendliche bestmöglich gestalten

Target 6:
To ensure conditions under which children and young people can grow up as healthy as possible

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Gesunde Ernährung für alle zugänglich machen

Target 7:
To provide access to a healthy diet for all

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Gesunde und sichere Bewegung im Alltag fördern

Target 8:
To promote healthy, safe exercise and activity in everyday life through appropriate environments

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Target 9:
To promote psychosocial health in all population groups

Symbol für den Gesundheitsziele-Bereich: Qualitativ hochstehende und leistbare Gesundheitsversorgung für alle sicherstellen

Target 10:
To secure sustainable and efficient health care services of high quality for all

A broad subject requires a broad process

The process of defining the Austrian health targets has been regarded as exemplary at the international level, since all relevant political and social stakeholders have been actively involved. In addition, everyone interested in this topic was invited to express their views and opinions through an online platform. The results of the online participation were then incorporated in the development of the 10 health targets.

Guiding principles

The health targets are based on a number of guiding principles. The most relevant are “orientation towards health determinants”, “health-in-all-policies approach” and “promoting health equity”. They take into account the health determinants and policy areas that are crucial in this respect. In addition they relate to both living conditions and individual behaviour, and identify how health equity can be improved.

Mission Statement

With the Austrian health targets we aim to improve the quality of life of all people living in Austria and contribute to more wellbeing and health. Health is profoundly influenced by the settings where people live, learn, work, or play. Therefore we, as representatives of different organizations and areas of policy, work together closely. We identify determining factors and preconditions, and implement measures, which lead to better quality of life and health. Thereby we invest in Austria’s future.

A framework for action

Implementation of the Austrian Health Targets

For the implementation of the Austrian Health Targets,  intersectoral working groups are defining sub-targets and concrete actions.  All of the relevant institutions and organisations are represented in the working groups, so that the proposed objectives and measures can be implemented in the respective institutions/organisations.  In this way, a systematic approach and consistency as well as sustainability in the realisation of the measures are ensured.

The health targets provide a framework for coordinated action, which is backed by all institutions involved.


The implementation of the Austrian Health Targets is accompanied by a monitoring process. This serves the purpose of strategic management and is intended to contribute towards optimised strategy and action plans. The goals and key elements of the monitoring process were drawn up by the GÖG (Austrian Public Health Institute), coordinated with the Health Targets plenary, and adopted by the Federal Health Commission (BGK).

The monitoring process acts at three levels:

  • 1. At the level of the 10 Austrian Health Targets, meta indicators were defined with experts which enable statements to be made on the achievement of goals.
  • 2. At the level of objectives, indicators are to be drawn up in the respective working groups.
  • 3. At the level of measures, the responsible institutions in the working group define at least one benchmark which is designed to make the level of implementation of the measure visible. At regular intervals the current state of affairs is ascertained. Thereby the working groups and the Health Targets plenary are able to reflect upon the monitoring results regularly and to use this information to plan the next steps.
    The monitoring of the Austrian Health Targets takes place in coordination with the monitoring of other strategies such as the health reform process, the health promotion strategy and the health strategy for children and young people.