Delay in Financial Assistance has Afflicted SriLanka’s Public Healthcare System

The continuing breaks have created a need for the private sector to stand in.

Opportunities will continue to be constricted in Sri Lanka’s public healthcare area, as ongoing absence of healthcare funding and medical infrastructure carry on to scare the sector, a report from Fitch Solutions has disclosed.

Sri Lanka’s hospitals are controlled by the public sector because of the government’s policy of giving free universal healthcare to people.

Moreover, the need for quality healthcare has risen over the years with better incomes and an ageing population, and non-communicable diseases have been on the increase because of the changing way of life.

However, the nation’s medical sector cannot manage with the increase in demand. The state only has one qualified medical professional for every 1,200 individuals and one nurse for every 570 people in the population. The government financing for medical care has also been less than 2% of GDP each year since 2015.

Public medical care infrastructure in the north and east of the state has also been poor because of the damage caused during the nation’s civil war.

Moreover, the country presently faces an great deficiency of specialist beds for cardiology, surgeries, cancer and neurology, and it is estimated that there is a insufficiency of 14,000 doctors, and 25,000 nurses.

Fitch warned that the chronic under-financing within the nation’s public medical care system continues to undermine access to care, posing risks to multinational medical companies revenue widening probability. Lack of investment also contributes to a increasing need to pay out-of-pocket for medicines even when using public facilities.

On the other hand, these shortages have created a pressing need for greater private-sector involvement to denote the prevailing gaps in the public system. The long-term rise of household incomes is expected to provide a boon for private hospitals which generate a substantial amount of their revenues from out-of-pocket payments, the report stated.

“Sri Lanka’s private healthcare sector has been on a rapid uptrend due to the burgeoning middle and upper-middle-income classes, who seek healthcare at relative convenience,” Fitch noted.

The long-term demand outlook of private medical care system also remains favourable because of increasing healthcare insurance penetration, lifestyle-related disorders and physical limitations of the public healthcare system.

Moreover, the healthcare sector saw some great investments in good capacity by many companies in the last five years. Main private healthcare players also anticipate ongoing strong growth within the area, which could drive healthcare market to rise in the future.

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