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Economic Crisis: A Setback for The Healthcare Industry?

Oct 23, 2017

Healthcare is a global concern because a country’s economic development and poverty reduction capabilities depend greatly on raising a country with fit and healthy people. The economic downturn that has unfolded in the recent years has had an adverse effect not only on the financial set up of the economy but has also taken a toll on the healthcare industry. Wonder why? Here are a few effects of the economic crisis on the healthcare industry:

Reduced Funding

Increasing profits and making the shareholders happy has been one of the primary aims of hospital funding. With the recent economic crisis, there has been less money coming in from various sources in the healthcare industry. This has forced the hospital management to undertake severe measures of cost-cutting by reducing the number of cleaning staff, overworking the hospital staff, reducing the number of beds and facilities, etc. to cover up for the existing losses.


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Rising Rate of Uninsured Families

The economic crisis has resulted in an increase in unemployment rates due to which many families have lost their company-funded health insurance. At the current state of the economy, many people cannot afford a health insurance. This ultimately leaves many people vulnerable to diseases, illness, and possible death, which indirectly affects the healthcare industry.

Staff Shortages

As previously mentioned, the economic crisis has forced the healthcare industry players to downsize their staff size and overwork their existing staff. This results in increased chances or errors, which eventually reduces the quality of patient care provided.

Excessive Control of Pharmaceutical Companies

With the economic crisis increasing the cost of research and development, many of the pharmaceutical companies are skyrocketing the prices of medicines to remain profitable. As a result, proper medication has become an unaffordable factor for many of the people who have been adversely hit by the economic crisis.

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The Framework to Overcome the Healthcare Crisis

Leadership

At the country level, ministers in the healthcare industry must work with the finance ministry to identify and cover-up losses in the healthcare industry.

Monitoring and Analysis

A country-specific analysis should be undertaken for understanding the impact of the economic crises on various sections of the population. Also, WHO reports can be analyzed to understand the money flow for healthcare benefits from various governments and other sources of funding.

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Keeping a Check on Public Health Spending

By keeping tabs on governments’ spend in healthcare, it can be ensured that the spending is primarily and genuinely done on the pro-poor category, which needs the maximum boost.

New Ways of Doing Healthcare Business

The healthcare industry can focus on better ways to reduce costs such as minimizing overlap and duplication, promoting better nutrition and sanitation, etc.

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