Putting "sustainable healthcare" at the heart of the debate

Our healthcare systems must evolve and adapt the way care is prescribed. How can we strike a balance between implementing innovations and maintaining viable social service organizations?

  • 04/10/2017

Table ronde à l'Agora du Haut-Carré à Talence. Crédits photos : Hugues Bretheau Table ronde à l'Agora du Haut-Carré à Talence. Crédits photos : Hugues Bretheau

This question, along with the presentation of different views about innovation in healthcare, were the main topics addressed during "Innovation Day", organized by the University of Bordeaux end June.

Sustainable healthcare, a major issue for society

On June 28th, as part of Week 26 (a week of international symposia), the University of Bordeaux welcomed opinion leaders, experts and drivers of change to exchange about innovation in healthcare and its sustainability.

The question of sustainable healthcare is emerging in international discussions as an essential criteria for all future healthcare systems, and places strong limits on our capacity to innovate and finance innovation. At the same time, this situation leads to opportunities in new fields: prevention, simultaneous approaches to associated diseases in co-morbidity, etc. The Innovation Day included an opening address from Rafael Bengoa, former Health Minister of the Basque government, two round tables with very lively debates, and an innovation presentation by researchers and company directors. 

Keynote address by Rafael Bengoa

The former health minister of the Spanish Basque government defended universal public healthcare in his presentation: "The Inevitable Transformation of Healthcare. International Trends and Lessons.” Faced with exploding demographics, an aging population and reduced public funding, he described the resources that could improve healthcare: telemedicine, electronic prescriptions, integrated healthcare, patient empowerment, payment models based on performance rather than service-provision, etc. This culture of progress must not however develop to the detriment of that which already works well. Optimistic, Bengoa concluded on the ability of practitioners to lead these changes.

Speaker and participant feedback

"As an American, I think that our country has the greatest room for improvement in terms of our healthcare system catching up with the rest of the world. I find it surprising and encouraging that other countries, even France, continue to work towards a better experience of healthcare."

Casey Le Jeune, co-founder of Elevar (USA)

The University of Bordeaux has clearly shown that it is a rapidly-emerging international university, establishing partnerships throughout the world in strategically important fields such as sustainable healthcare.

Jason Heikenfeld — Professor of electronic engineering and assistant vice-president responsible for commercialization, University of Cincinnati

"Sustainable healthcare is closely related to organizational issues: we must pursue the convergence of fragmented systems. Hospitals in particular must be re-thought, facilitating access to non-discriminatory healthcare, integrating health and social care, defining new value-based, economic models and adapting our teaching to these changes."

Anaïs Giacinti, program manager, SPRING project, University of Bordeaux

The most important message from today is the fascinating role that universities can play in highlighting original topics and bringing worldwide partners together as speakers and participants.

Denise Silber — Expert in digital healthcare and founder, Basil Strategies

"Already familiar with the university’s teaching role, I didn’t know much about its interface with companies and innovators. I’ve learned an enormous number of things from this one day. I appreciated the variety of the interventions. The feedback from former students with the launch of The Hub was particularly interesting and the event format was perfect. Such dynamism communicates itself! I hope that this event will be held again and disseminated more widely among the university community."

Eléonore Tron, public health intern, ISPED (Institute of Public Helath, Epidemiology and Development, University of Bordeaux).