Over 180 hospital leaders, physicians and healthcare industry experts gathered at Peking Union Medical College last month for US-China Patient Day.
The event, which was co-hosted by the US-China Healthcare Cooperation Program (HCP), the U.S. Embassy and the China Hospital Association, highlighted the possibilities and mutual benefits of international cooperation and how collaboration can help Chinese patients gain access to better healthcare innovations.
President of the China Hospital Association Huang Jiefu was among some of the high-profile guests present.
“Developing a sustainable, value-based healthcare system that guarantees high-quality and effective medical treatment is an important cornerstone of the ongoing reforms,” said Huang, who is also the former Vice Minister of National Health and Family Planning Commission. “This will require the healthcare system to organically combine the industry’s development with the concept of ‘patient first.’”
Scott Mulhauser, Chief of Staff to the US Ambassador to China Max Baucus, also emphasized the benefits of innovation and patient-centered care.
“With healthcare undergoing reform and living standards rising, China is putting more emphasis on improving the quality of healthcare service for patients,” he said.
As China continues reforming its healthcare system, improving healthcare quality is becoming an increasingly important issue for a country with over 1.3 billion people. The combination of an aging population, higher incomes and improvements to medical insurance coverage are all driving demand for better medical services. A number of exchange programs including hospital leadership trainings, physician observation programs and symposiums are being carried out between the US and China via platforms like the US-China Healthcare Cooperation Program.
“With their potential for developing cutting-edge treatment and life-saving therapies, enterprises are playing a key role in driving innovation and improving patient care,” said Zhou Jun, Executive Director of US-China Healthcare Cooperation Program, an independent public-private partnership program under the American Chamber of Commerce in China that fosters long-term healthcare cooperation between the US and China. “As China increasingly incentivizes innovation and seeks to move up the value chain, US enterprises and healthcare providers are expecting more opportunities to work with local partners in delivering high-quality products and services, and help satisfy the various needs of Chinese people. ”