According to IESE, health professionals should have more responsibility in managing the system
To be sustainable in the years to come, the management of the health system must be structured on the basis of a model integrating a broader conception of health. In other words, a system which places the patient at the center, which involves health professionals in management and not only in care, endowed with the necessary resources and recognized and promoted as a fundamental economic engine.
These are the main conclusions of the report “Health at the center of our society: ideas for a pending debate”, prepared by health management experts from around the world – led by IESE professor Jaume Ribera – in collaboration with Vifor Pharma.
For the authors, achieving this change of model involves acting “not only on the 20% of the determinants of health to which 80% of resources are devoted, but on a much higher number of factors that directly influence our health. depend on the environment, socio-economic variables and behavioral habits ”. They consider that this paradigm shift requires “building a much more matrix organization, both at national and regional level”, by putting “integration between health and social services” as a starting point.
According to Professor Ribera, in this new conception it is also necessary to intervene on the inefficiencies that are currently occurring in the system. In this sense, the report proposes to give public entities their own legal personality, giving them maximum management autonomy; Separate “ownership” and “management” in said institutions with independent bodies; and promote the participation of health professionals in different managerial positions.
“During the pandemic, it became clear that the involvement of health professionals in management responsibilities in their different areas has led to very significant improvements in the system,” adds Ribera.
The patient at the center
Another of the propositions raised by the study is the realization of the so desired “patient at the center”. To achieve this, explains Francesc Moreu, international consultant in health management and one of the authors, “their participation must be considered as active subjects in the definition and governance of the health model, and offer them greater participation. decisions that affect health. health as patients ”.
In this perspective, their participation in the definition of health priorities as citizens and in the improvement of the processes that they go through as users of the system should be formalized. In addition, adds Moreu, “we must take joint responsibility for citizens with their health and not just with their illness, because this has a direct impact on their well-being and the associated health costs”.
The health sector in Spain represents 12% of the GDP, employs more than 2.7 million workers and leads investments in R&D and, therefore, it is necessary to recognize its importance from an economic point of view, as a driving force job creation and innovation, experts point out.
The document proposes a series of strategies to enhance this reality, such as the bet on Strategic Projects for Economic Recovery and Transformation (LOSS), as a figure for developing innovative ideas that generate wealth and return to the health of the population. It also highlights the convenience of developing an industrial policy in favor of the production of health technologies; identify talent needs in the sector, facilitating the creation of new professional profiles; and considers the development of innovative business clusters around life sciences essential.
The analysis concludes that “the sustainability of the health system is structurally threatened”. In addition, he analyzes that the reforms undertaken since 2010 – focused on sustainability by reducing costs – could “soon lead to a deterioration in the quality of care and the health of the population”.
According to the document, the public contribution to healthcare in Spain is lower than the European average. In fact, an increase in investments of between 1% and 1.5% of GDP would be necessary. In addition, the text identifies shortcomings in dependency financing and the need for a financing model that is less dependent on the economic cycle.