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The Healthcare War: What the Future Holds for Healthcare Stakeholders

Future years will bring a whirlwind of patient-related issues for contemporary medicine, including healthcare costs, artificial intelligence (AI), and a showdown between patient rights and regulatory approval. 

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Using healthcare as leverage in international relations and global business has put an end to modest profit and patient-centrism. This has caused disputes between governments, businesses, and insurers, who must soon address the three biggest challenges to secure a future for patients worldwide. 

To remain resilient, competitive, and fair, healthcare providers, insurers, and biotech companies are urged to stand ahead of these developments by reading up on these issues in this Pacific Prime article. 


Healthcare Pricing Tug of War

Across the globe, the price of routine doctor visits, hospital stays, and drug prescriptions is becoming exorbitantly more and more expensive, resulting in an increasing number of insurers pulling out of regional markets to ensure their operational survival. 

This issue is caused by a pricing war among biotech companies, providers, and insurers. Today, the key entities that drive pricing are manufacturers that produce drugs, wholesale distributors that sell these drugs to consumers, and insurers that aim to provide coverage for these drugs. 

Underneath the bracket of the pricing war are key factors that fuel the complex negotiations between the entities, such as:

Clinical Research and Development Costs

Partnering with and conducting clinical research with a CRO in a highly developed country is expensive. Despite the allure of conducting clinical research in less developed countries as a cost-efficient alternative, they too come at significant costs and a lengthy approval process. 

Patent Protection and Market Exclusivity 

Pharmaceutical companies often hold patents for their drugs, granting them exclusivity in the market for a certain period of time. During this period, they can charge higher prices to recoup their R&D costs, especially in clinical trials, resulting in higher prices for brand-name drugs. 

Varying Levels of Regulation or a Lack Thereof

Various countries and regions have begun bolstering their regulations as a means of protecting consumers and ensuring the stability of their public healthcare. Coupled with a lack of regulation, global insurers are faced with the challenge of plan pricing. 

A Complex Supply Chain

Drug producers, wholesalers, distributors, and retailers all play a role in the pharmaceutical supply chain. The drug’s total cost rises as each link in the supply chain tries to make a profit while covering its own costs. As a result of geopolitics, this will continue to take center stage. 

A Skyrocket in Demand for the Best

There is more pressure on healthcare systems and greater costs for patients and insurers due to the increasing number of people, the older population, the frequency of diseases, and the technological advancements in medicine that continue to define contemporary medical practices. 

A Doctor’s Love-Hate Relationship with AI

Now that people have acclimated themselves to the advent of AI in their personal and professional lives, it’s become quite evident that the use of AI has positive connotations. However, the AI revolution has led to widespread concern among doctors, who struggle with self-diagnosing patients. 

Today, physicians are faced with difficult patients who tend to self-diagnose using generative AI tools, seeking suggestions from these apparent tools prior to meeting with a doctor, and, in the worst case, coming to a conclusion by themselves on the prognosis of their conditions. 

AI should be used as an assistive tool to help speed up and simplify the detection of diseases, claims processes, and client services. While the tool has the potential to provide useful suggestions, it was never meant to obstruct healthcare professionals who have a duty to treat patients. 

Patient Rights and Regulatory Approval

As more and more countries grapple with the notion of abortion rights, which ties directly to women’s rights, the healthcare sector must continuously assess the sudden shifts that may occur, setting a precedent for other novel medical practices that have never been used before. 

That which was once not legal will soon require authorities to impose reasonable regulations so as to allow and enable patients to choose what is right for their own bodies and health conditions. As more patients become independent in their decisions, the healthcare sector too will have to adapt. 

An example would be the United States, where more than 60% of Americans support legal abortion, showing a strong transition towards patient-centric decision making and placing patient rights at the top of their priorities in future Supreme Court rulings. 

While the example of the United States highlights the evolving attitudes towards abortion rights, it is also the duty of healthcare stakeholders around the globe to engage in international dialogue so as to ensure the provision of medical services that aim to save and improve lives above all else. 

As a result, healthcare stakeholders must take into consideration and uphold the following: 

Patient-Centered Care

Patient-centered care is a fundamental principle in healthcare, and it extends to the provision of abortion services. As patients have the right to make informed decisions about their own bodies and reproductive health, healthcare providers should respect their autonomy and provide non-judgmental, compassionate care. 

Ethics Above All

The issue of abortion raises ethical questions that need to be carefully addressed within the healthcare sector. It is important to strike a balance between respecting the rights and beliefs of healthcare providers and ensuring that patients have access to the care they need. 

Spreading Awareness and Education

Education and public awareness campaigns play a crucial role in shaping attitudes and understandings around abortion rights. It is important to provide accurate information about the safety, legality, and importance of access to abortion services. This can help reduce stigma and promote empathy. 


Looking Ahead to a Better Future

As global healthcare continues to evolve in accordance with the challenges and positive technological developments, it is important to uphold a balance between profit, patient-centric outcomes, and patient rights. 

This initiative will enable expatriates and travellers around the world to move and live freely in various parts of the world, where their medical costs are covered at affordable premiums. Furthermore, in an interconnected world, this initiative will foster unity among brokers, insurers, and providers, creating better lives for the global population. 

Established in 2000, Pacific Prime is an award-winning global insurance brokerage and employee benefits specialist that offers individual health and corporate insurance solutions. 

Our brokers can help guide and recommend the right health insurance plans based on your budget and personal needs.

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Content Writer at Pacific Prime
Piyanat is a Content Writer with an affinity for storytelling and marketing. He works with a team of experienced professionals at Pacific Prime who create a range of engaging and informative content aimed at helping both individuals and companies understand the importance of and benefits of insurance.

Upon graduating from Mahidol University International College’s International Relations program, he spent his career in marketing and business development, working for an international subcontractor, a marketing research firm, an international news agency, a software development company, and a creative agency. His journey now continues at Pacific Prime, where he hopes to make an impact by simplifying insurance.

In his free time, Piyanat is an avid martial artist and musician, spending most of his time at boxing gyms in Nakhon Pathom and music studios with his friends in the music industry. He’s also a big fan of turtles.