Top 10 Health Industry Issues - Views from the 2016 Healthcare Asia Forum

The challenges involved in caregiving are universal, and supporting this population requires solutions that are global in nature. That said, there are cultural, demographic and geographic nuances as well.  PwC’s Health Research Institute’s annual report highlights the forces expected to have the most impact on industry in 2016, with a glance back at key trends from the past decade.

PwC reports that 2016 will be a year of firsts for healthcare consumers, organizations and new entrants as innovative tools and services enter the New Health Economy.  Three of the ten identified trends include;

1. Care in the palm of your hand - Thanks to technology and shifts in financial incentives, care will begin to move into the palms of consumers’ hands, providing care anywhere, anytime.

2. Behavioral healthcare: no longer on the backburner - Employers and healthcare organizations eye behavioral healthcare as key to keeping costs down, productivity up and consumers healthy.

3. Care moves to the community - As payment shifts to value-based models, health systems will pursue lower-cost settings more aggressively than before while employing creative approaches to distributing care.

While this report was not written about, or for REUNIONCare, it feels like it could have been.  REUNIONCare is one of the available tools supporting the New Health Economy, and the features and benefits we built into the platform are validated not only through our customers, but through industry analysis like the PwC report.

The inaugural Healthcare Asia Forum 2016 featured key speakers from the network in its Kuala Lumpur (April 7), Jakarta (April 28), Singapore (May 12), and Bangkok (May 26) legs.  In a recent interview with Healthcare Asia Magazine, PwC representatives provided the following;

Regarding the current state of healthcare in Southeast Asia: There is no sector more important than health.  Health matters to each of us as individuals. It is our most precious and valuable asset and connects us all like no other. Health also matters to society. It lies at the heart of our economic, political, social and environmental prosperity and it is now the world’s largest industry – with a value and cost three times greater than the banking sector. Technological advances, empowered consumers, disruptive new entrants, and rising demand by an aging population are ushering in a new era in healthcare in South East Asia. While many of those trends have been emerging for some time, never before have they been accompanied by a rapid shift in dollars, triggering major changes in behaviour and fundamentally altering the business of healthcare.

Addressing current trends in healthcare in the region:  An ageing population in the region will result in greater healthcare expenditure by the elderly - On an average, about 60-70% of the population in the Southeast Asia region is in the working age group of 15-64 years. Singapore and Thailand have among the highest percentage of aging population in the above 65 years age group. This is expected to result in a greater demand for quality healthcare services for the elderly, especially in these two regions. The percentage of people over age 65 is expected to more than quadruple by 2050 in Southeast Asia

Addressing trends do you see developing in the region in the coming years: In the New Health Era in South East Asia, patients will become first and foremost consumers, with the freedom that come with making more decisions on their health through a rise in financial affluence. These consumers will demand a continuum of well-being - a series of seamlessly integrated, customised health services aligned to their personal health philosophy. Consumers in the New Health Era will reward trusted service providers that can help achieve this. In the New Health Era, the mere collection of data will be replaced with lightning-fast analysis delivered directly to a care team that anticipates problems before they arise. Individuals will be co-creators of their health decisions, spending more of their discretionary dollars on tools that help them live well. Care delivery, following the move from inpatient to outpatient services, will inch ever closer to the home via retail businesses, remote monitoring and mobile devices.

So I’ll repeat myself - the challenges involved in caregiving are universal, and supporting this population requires solutions that are global in nature.  REUNIONCare is excited to be a part of the solution.  If you haven’t already, we invite you to build your Circle of Care for the aging journey today.