Sustainability challenges in Healthcare Systems across Latin America

Sustainability challenges in Healthcare Systems across Latin America

Universal healthcare coverage is designed to ensure that all individuals and communities can have access to comprehensive, adequate, timely, quality services, provided without discrimination and in accordance with their needs. It also ensures the use of these services without financial hardship, particularly for groups in vulnerable situations.

The sustainability of a health system is therefore critical and Latin American countries have prioritized the importance of sustainability in decision making to guarantee the universal right to healthcare. However, governments are facing different challenges that include: the growing demand for health services, financing the purchase of medical equipment and medicines that are not sustainable, and a lack of human resources that is necessary for exceptional patient care.

In addition, in the four largest markets of Latin America based on their Gross Domestic Product (GDP): Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico, we noticed these countries keep their total health expenditure below the average set by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Strategic suggestions to address these challenges

Public-private partnerships could be the crucial piece for governments to generate allies to achieve a sustainable health system. These relationships can help to close the gap, therefore, to promote these relationships, we considered 4 suggestions that can begin paving the way:

1.- Prevention: The private sector can collaborate and promote preventive campaigns that help raise awareness of preventable diseases. If the public has access to the correct information in a timely manner, then costly illnesses could potentially be avoided.

2.-Diagnosis: Government and private sectors can collaborate strategically on diagnostic campaigns that could be a crucial piece in changing the health care systems. If a disease is detected in time, it could be treated in a timely manner, giving patients the opportunity to control their illness, improve the quality of their life, and even find curative care.

3.-Digital transformation: The pandemic brought us into a new age of digitalization, and health systems that rely on digital technologies can undoubtedly reduce inequalities. One example is telemedicine, which can guarantee access to health services for those who cannot travel to hospitals.

4.-Comprehensive proposals for decision makers: In addition to innovative models of access to medicines, today we must have comprehensive proposals that include awareness and prevention actions, improved diagnostic tools, and treatment adherence programs. This will create a better understanding of the value proposition that companies have to offer to solve health problems.

To this end, at LLYC we believe Latin American governments and healthcare companies in the private sector can strengthen their collaboration to promote the fulfillment of the priorities of universal and sustainable health care in each of their countries. We also believe they can meet the goals proposed by the Pan American Organization as part of the Sustainable Development Goals for 2030.

Luis Anaya Director de Healthcare de México y zona Norte en LLYC

Luis Anaya Director de Healthcare de México y zona Norte en LLYC