How do health care systems change?

The Dutch Health Care Reform 2006, a reflection

Having witnessed the Dutch Health Care Reform (see Wikipedia), it is inspiring to review it to evaluate what processes and forces have initiated the development and formed its course.

Based upon our studies, we construed this presentation
(you might want to see it in full screen).

In his extensive study of the Dutch Reform, Hans Maarse concludes about the relationship between personal health and finances: ” ..privatisation has a great influence on the accessibility, freedom of choice, solidarity and quality of care.” And, “ perhaps the most important finding from a political viewpoint, it increases costs.”¹

Of course, as in many advanced health care systems, as it is probably so too in emerging countries’ systems of health care, “finances” are the dominant driver. But the power of longing for a good health and care for health makes the world turn around. Health care systems all represent a common and core value in life: the personal health condition. It is closely monitored at different parameters to see how its development affects the very human condition.² ³

In this presentation, we reviewed the Dutch Reform in phases. We also pictured the development of the pharmaceutical market in it. And with that, we gave some reflections as for genuine and integer opportunities to develop pharmaceutical business.

In discussing possibilities for moving desired developments, we were reflecting on what processes or factors might be used to work along to stimulate innovation and change. If we could do so, we could change the system for the better and alongside with it, develop our businesses when they team up with the same intentions: better and more care for less money.

We had a very stimulating discussion about these possibilities to pharma companies about teaming up with the innovating forces in health care systems: we suggest a few in the presentation. Of course, it is way different from that what has been comprehended with the term “Market Access”. It could rather be changed into “market -” or “innovation collaboration.”  ;-)


¹Hans Maarse, Competition in healthcare no guarantee of cost savings In Money.  Tuesday, 18 October 2011.  See his Book, “Markthervorming in de Zorg, een anlyse…”, Maastricht, 2011. in pdf here , Also:  “Results of the market-oriented reform in the Netherlands: a review”, Hans Maarse (a1), Patrick Jeurissen (a2) and Dirk Ruwaard (a1) Published online: 17 August 2015.

² e.g. the Euro Health Consumer Index, 2012; See it here
³ See also the OECD Health database, e.g. OECD Health Data 2017


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