The Russian healthcare sector has all the resources it needs to increase the export of medical services
“The president has set the ambitious task of quadrupling the export of medical services compared with 2017 to USD 1 billion […] Russian healthcare has sufficient resources and expertise to ensure the fulfilment of this ambitious task,” Russian Deputy Minister of Health Oleg Salagay said.
“Even though the indicators of the core federal project have been fulfilled, Russia still ranks 41st in the Medical Tourism Index’s rating for 2020–2021. It should be noted that this rating pays significant attention to related services, and not only assesses medical services [...] The world market is developing very dynamically, and by 2025, according to PWC estimates, this market could reach USD 30 billion […] We need to make efforts to create better conditions for the implementation of these services that are cited in the rating,” Russian Accounts Chamber Deputy Chairperson Galina Izotova said.
The pandemic showed that medicine in Russia has already reached new heights today
“Medicine has never been at such a high level in Russia as it was during the pandemic [...] The organization of CT centres and emergency aid, the rapid building of treatment guidelines, the construction of hospitals in just a few days, and so on, suggests that medicine in Russia is at a completely different level,” Medicare Managing Partner Andrey Shuvalov said.
Foreign clients are not informed about Russian medical services in a complete and accessible manner
“We focus on developing our unified website [of the federal project ‘Development of the Export of Medical Services’] […] The information there today is not enough […] What the patient wants should come first. But we didn’t find a service on the website. This is a problem that needs to be addressed,” said Yelena Zhidkova, Head of the Central Healthcare Directorate at Russian Railways.
“The level of accessibility [for foreign clients] is quite low today. Not all of our call centres have employees who speak English,” said Yelena Zhidkova, Head of the Central Healthcare Directorate at Russian Railways.
The world still has outdated impressions that diminish the level of trust in Russian medicine
“Why are people leaving the country? The first reason is technology. Healthcare, equipment, and staffing were not so developed in the [Far Eastern Federal District in 2010]. The problem was service. The most important thing was trust in the doctor and the clinic,” Vice Rector for Medical Affairs at the Medical Centre of Far Eastern Federal University Oleg Pak said.
Differences in the mentality of Russian medical workers and foreign patients may worsen the understanding of Russian medicine
“[Foreign clients] want an individual approach, so that doctors treat them with the highest priority. But we cannot allow this because a Russian patient is as much a patient for us as a foreigner. So, regardless of the method of funding, we try to provide them with the same aid [...] We need to work on nursing and medical services because the mentality is different. It’s difficult to compete with an Asian service. Their bows and hierarchy put you in such a position that you want to buy something from them. Our doctors and nurses cannot give this to a patient. But, nevertheless, we are working on it,” Vice Rector for Medical Affairs at the Medical Centre of Far Eastern Federal University Oleg Pak said.
“There are a lot of problems. The main problems are related to training, service, and management,” Academy of Health Innovation Clinic General Director Sergey Davydov said.
Raise awareness among foreign patients about Russian medicine by releasing transparent data in all languages
“Our doctors and clinics should be positioned abroad [...] We need to position the country, services, and our doctors,” said Yelena Zhidkova, Head of the Central Healthcare Directorate at Russian Railways.
“The unified website must be aggressive. It should be created [...] with a translation into different languages,” Academy of Health Innovation Clinic General Director Sergey Davydov said.
“There must be translation into a foreign language […] First of all, English must be available. There must be an ability to receive feedback or inquiries in English [...] Information should be available everywhere – on the resources of our institutions and also on the resources and in the journals of our trains and planes,” said Yelena Zhidkova, Head of the Central Healthcare Directorate at Russian Railways.
A client-centred model needs to be built in the medical sector to attract foreign patients
“Healthcare systems that aim for a patient-centred model are the most appealing from the standpoint of medical tourism […] There are several principles for building such a model that will create a foundation for the development of medical exports. This includes the obligation to accept or take into account the patient’s opinion, the integrity and continuity of treatment and diagnostic processes, and the uniformity and availability of medical care,” Russian Accounts Chamber Deputy Chairperson Galina Izotova said.
The creation of medical clusters, working groups, and schools needs to be considered to work out plans for developing and sharing experience
“I really like the idea ofclusters, and we see how clusters are starting to gain popularity in countries like the UAE and China [...] With 4–5 clusters in the country, we will attain a fundamentally new level of medicine,” MEDSCAN Chairman of the Board of Directors Sergey Sidorov said.
“The idea [of creating clusters] is a good one [...] We need to look at the results of Skolkovo’s work and the medical cluster that is already operating today,” said Yelena Zhidkova, Head of the Central Healthcare Directorate at Russian Railways.
“Not only can we bring in foreign specialists and foreign medicines, but in fact we can also use the most advanced organizational technologies that are easily translated into external medicine […] We’ve opened a nursing school. This involved training that was conducted jointly with the Israelis,” MEDSCAN Chairman of the Board of Directors Sergey Sidorov said.
“I would like us to create an interdepartmental working group in the Far Eastern Federal District that would be given a certain status for the export of medical services,” Academy of Health Innovation Clinic General Director Sergey Davydov said.
For more, see the Roscongress Foundation’s Information and Analytical System roscongress.org