By Connor Boyd Health Reporter For Mailonline
Published: 13:04 GMT, 15 January 2020 | Updated: 13:05 GMT, 15 January 2020
The best countries in the world for raising a child have been revealed – and the UK does not feature in the top ten.
Britain ranked 11th in the annual Best Countries report, despite its economy dwarfing every nation above it, while the US came 18th.
Scandinavian countries dominated the top of the rankings, with Denmark, Sweden and Norway clinching the first, second and third spots.
Denmark was hailed as the best place to start a family because of its 'generous maternity and paternity leave policies', as well as free healthcare and education.
Sweden and Denmark were praised as being family friendly for similar reasons, as well as their robust social care programmes and low crime rates.
Denmark was hailed as the best place to start a family because of its 'generous maternity and paternity leave policies', as well as free healthcare and education (its capital city, Copenhagen)
Canada and the Netherlands rounded out the top five, followed by Switzerland, New Zealand, Australia and Austria.
The UK got high marks for its public education (9.6) and healthcare system (9.4), only slightly behind Denmark's 9.9 scores in both categories.
But Britain scored poorly in income equality, earning just 2.6 compared to Denmark's 9.2. It means many children are still born into poverty, unlike in the Scandinavian nations.
The UK's ranking was also dragged down by its 5.4 score for political stability, with the authors citing Brexit as the main cause.
Writing in the report, done every year since 2016 by the University of Pennsylvania, they said: 'The country’s role on the global stage faces new questions as the government is planning to approve this year its withdrawal from the EU.
'The Brexit process, which will require months, if not years, of negotiations for new trade pacts and other