Invest in healthcare
The innovative healthcare industry in Belgium – largely driven by foreign investment – has a significant positive impact on the country’s economic performance, infrastructure, export and employment and contributes to improving citizens’ quality of life.
The sector directly employs more than 52,000 people and benefits from several positive fiscal incentives which contribute to making the country a world leader for clinical trials and logistics for pharmaceutical products.
However, Belgian healthcare could still be dramatically improved in order to benefit patients even more. For instance, the country’s administrative complexity can be a big challenge for companies, especially in healthcare, and can prevent patients from getting innovative treatments as quickly as in other countries.
To enable sustainable growth in this sector and attract more substantial investments, the government needs to invest in long-term healthcare sustainability: research & development, early and broad access to healthcare innovation, early adoption of innovative solutions and ultimately move to value-based healthcare. To anticipate future healthcare needs, an ambitious government program is needed, where binding collaboration is key and the complexity of divided and ill-defined competences is overcome. Also, investment in a strong health data policy and integrated digital health infrastructure for all healthcare actors, including the patient, is fundamental.
AmCham Belgium recommends
To improve business and investment opportunities
- Simplify the Belgian healthcare system
- Foster innovation in healthcare
- Establish value-based healthcare
- Invest in lifelong health
Simplify the Belgian healthcare system
- Simplify and modernize collaboration and coordination between regional and federal governments and administrations
- Reform healthcare financing systems: need for transversal financing, across the silos to facilitate integrated, transmural care (including prevention)
- Eliminate waste in the system to create headroom for innovation
Foster innovation in healthcare
- Further stimulate an R&D ecosystem for pharma and MedTech through a favorable policy framework
- Simplify, broaden and speed-up reimbursement and access processes, further expand innovative funding mechanisms
Establish value-based healthcare
- Allocate sufficient resources to establish findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable (FAIR) public databases to foster innovation, promote benchmarking and improve quality of care
- Embed the patient’s voice in healthcare decision-making and unlock the potential of personalized healthcare via real world data
Invest in lifelong health
- Accelerate investments in an integrated digital health infrastructure for all healthcare actors including the patient, resulting in improved overall health
- Enable accelerated investments in better health promotion and education, thereby improving health literacy and promoting healthy behavior
Real World Data
The key to securing an innovative Belgian healthcare landscape
Real World Data (RWD) can be defined as patients’ health and lifestyle data that is obtained through real world settings, i.e. the daily life of the patient, rather than the data collected from clinical trials. The integration of RWD in the Belgian healthcare system can lead to more innovative, increasingly patient-centered and sustainable healthcare. From prevention of disease to maintaining a healthy life and treatment and care management, it results in a more personalized healthcare approach and a better allocation of the available budget.
Belgian healthcare policy has gradually begun to integrate RWD. To reach the full potential of RWD, however, certain issues must be addressed
COVID-19 and the healthcare system
The current pandemic reminds us, more than ever, of the importance of our overall health and of the vulnerability of our healthcare system. COVID-19 will impact healthcare in several waves and in different ways, with consequences on acute COVID-care, non-COVID care, chronic care and well-being. AmCham Belgium's Innovative Healthcare Committee (IHC) believes that the COVID-19 outbreak is a unique opportunity to rethink our healthcare system with out-of-the-box ideas to improve it and ensure that it continues to fulfill its role as an example to aspire to.
- Secure free trade of healthcare-related goods
- Invest in non-COVID care and ensure fast access to innovation
- Accelerate the integrated digital approach to healthcare
- Optimize integrated chronic care
- Invest in prevention and the overall well-being of the population
- Make the Belgian healthcare operating model less complex, more coherent and efficient
Investing in Investments!
Read more about our recommendations on Healthcare, how better and innovative healthcare can be achieved, and more!
Our 2019 Priorities for a Prosperous Belgium (#PPB19) sets the objective for Belgium to reach a top 10 position in the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Index in ten years.
To achieve this goal, we call on the next governments to invest in:
- Public sector efficiency