17 February 2020
The healthcare industry is shifting its approaches from being curative and rehabilitative to becoming promotive and preventive. Hence, it calls upon the emergence of digital health where consumers are empowered to not only access and analyse their own health conditions but also have an informed decision to take action on preventing diseases and seeking treatment.
Thus, there is a need for continuous collaboration between private and public provision of primary care. This is essential for ensuring the affordability and sustainability of healthcare system in order to address the demands of the rising burden of non-communicable disease (NCD) – raised up by the Malaysian Ministry of Heath, population ageing and improving overall quality of care. Healthcare is a right for everyone to have access to.
There are 3 key stakeholders – consumers, providers and regulators. We propose that each stakeholder is one of the fundamental drivers for this inevitable shift in the healthcare industry.
With the ongoing trend in promoting health and wellness, the Malaysian consumers are prompted to be not only more health-conscious but also literate about the topic of health. Along with the emergence of social media as the platform for transacting health information, it urges the healthcare industry players to digitalise the delivery of their products and services.
As more consumers especially the non-Muslims understands that the concept of Halal signifies transparency and reliability beyond its religious observance, the Halal market has emerged as a lucrative market venture for healthcare industry players. Simultaneously, the traditional & complimentary medicine (T&CM) has been gaining traction due to its versatility as a standalone or complementary medicinal practice. It is imperative that stricter regulations are imposed so that the T&CM industry can thrive under a foundation of trust and credibility from the customers.
The industry shift caused by the integration of technology has transformed how patients interact with the healthcare providers such that patients are able to monitor their health and/or get diagnosis from the doctor with ample convenience. Concurrently, the market has shifted its focus towards a preventive model that could potentially address healthcare costs and the success rate of treatments. In overall, establishing a partnership between the public and private industry players could provide a better integrated service to the consumers. The market projection for the future is centred around an ageing nation with healthcare affordability issues, which prompts regulators to identify, plan and engage in projects and policies that will be beneficial to the aged group. Nevertheless, regulators should be perceptive and cautious in implementing controls or regulations to produce a greater beneficial outcome for the society and economy.
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