In developed countries quality health care is viewed as a major contributor in achieving economic progress. Without it, it can be translated into productivity lost which can be catastrophic to economic growth.
Every country therefore, is encouraged to lay down their program on how health care can be accessible and affordable to their citizenry. In most cases, it might be accessible but not affordable.
To developing countries quality health care is highly recommended to sustain economic growth where the bulk of the populace are poor and where production is dependent on intensive manpower resources.
In southeast Asia alone, thirty five percent of the twenty seven million deaths each year are among the people between the ages of thirty and sixty nine. For the middle-aged, cardiovascular, respiratory diseases and cancer are the prevalent ones.
Moreover, the majority of the people health care is simply unavailable to them. No medical practitioners, clinics, hospitals at their midst on a reasonable distance.
Unfortunately, this pressing issue cannot be solved by relying on government resources alone without the support of the health care industry whose vital role is to provide new products and services that will mold the foundations for a strong, financially sustainable health care system.
Leaders from the different sectors of the industry are encouraged to share and provide solutions to make health care accessible and affordable to anyone.
Furthermore, one need to consider some significant points that need to be addressed, whose and where the various sectoral leaders in the industry had met in a forum. Among the observations echoed were the following:
— Who should shoulder the expenses for health care? Is it the government or the private sector? People can allocate expenses for cars, vacations and dine often but when it comes to health care, people expect the system to pay for it.
— Most patients go to specialists instead of the general practitioners for primary care believing that they get better care. This drives the expenses more instead.
— Hospitals are getting smaller, not bigger. It used to be more beds meant more patients treated. Now the challenge is now treating more patients with less beds, that is the result of new technology that minimizes hospital stay.
— There’s a shift from ‘episodal’ care to preventive care to prevent the episode of diseases.
A Dutch company, Philips who are among the driving force of sustainable health care system has presented their health care philosophy with remarkable response to wit:
a) Focus on the patient. b) Simplifying the workload of health care professional. c) Think the entire cycle of care. d) Develop financially sustainable health care system. e) Work together. f) Align all incentives. Their concept had become realities in many parts of the world when they partnered with governments and the private sectors and providing examples of possible solutions to the problem.
Recently, it has introduced the easy web health care system in the Philippines through the internet, to allow online diagnosis of patients with heart ailment in remote areas from medical specialists at the Philippine Heart Center in suburban Manila.
In India, it has supported a mobile clinic with high tech medical equipment installed which is driven by a nurse to service the folks in remote areas. The van is linked via satellite to a hospital. The results of the test are diagnosed by the medical specialists of that hospital and prescription is given to patients without leaving his home.
The remote patient management can now focus on the care cycle that has to be strengthen the most: Early detection and after care outside the hospital. This system also reduces the burden on health care professionals.
Other forms of remote patient management is to allow patients to recuperate at home and the elderly can stay all along in their own home. The system had already been practiced by developed countries and it has shown the broad benefits it has brought by the technology in accessing to health care at minimal cost.