The French hospital system is characterized by the coexistence of public and private care facilities. The public sector accounts for 65% of beds and the private sector 35%.
The public health and social hospital sector includes public institutions in the health, social and medico-social sectors (hospitals, specialized hospital centers, retirement homes, specialized reception centers, etc.). Are grouped under the name "public hospital" regional hospitals, hospitals and local hospitals, including or not retirement homes.
Public health institutions are legal persons under public law. They perform a public service mission and are subject to state control. Most often attached to a municipality, they enjoy a certain autonomy of management.
There are different types of hospitals:
> Hospital centers (CH): their mission is to provide the full range of acute care in medicine, surgery and obstetrics as well as follow-up and long-term care. Some of them have a regional and / or university vocation.
> Local hospitals: located at a distance from the HCs, they provide the common medical care of the populations living in rural areas.
> Hospital centers specializing in psychiatry provide care for patients in psychiatry.