Background: Health economics is a combination of two fields – economics and health care. This field is widely applied all over the world. Challenges in developing countries are slightly different from developed countries but the principles of health economics apply equally to both. Pakistan is a low middle income country. Expectations related to healthcare system have been increased over the past few years. The Ministry of Health is playing a vital role in promoting quality of life among citizen but still there are many health related issues that need to be addressed seriously. Many health policies and plans focus on illness rather than health. The government should provide better health treatment to people at minimal cost so people will be able to give their best in the development of the country. Health economics will not only help in providing effective healthcare in Pakistan, but the government can formulate a proper health policy.
Health Economics Problems in Pakistan: With the rising health problems in the local population, the government seems unable to provide better treatment to the people. People try to find the best treatment in their household budget. About 68% of people go to a private clinic for consultation and treatment that cost is much higher which causes financial problems and stress. Researches have revealed that financial and domestic issues are more likely to cause various psychological problems and it has also been revealed that depression and anxiety are rampant in Pakistan. These illnesses become one of the leading causes of loss of productivity among citizens as they directly affect personal functioning. The patient becomes unable to earn effectively or cannot make the right decisions in daily matters. As a result, rest of the family members suffer from his burden of disease and somehow manage their household items. Therefore, it is important to select cost-effective treatment. Understanding the methods of economic evaluation is very important to assess the cost and effectiveness of health treatment and to provide the best alternatives to treatment.
The Role of PILL in Health Economics: Health economics education is increasing significantly in Pakistan. PILL is also playing its part in raising awareness in this regard. Center of Health Economics Research was established in 2017 as a department in Pakistan Institute of Living and Learning. This department has taken important steps to overcome health problems and identify the financial aspects of choosing the best treatment. The department is providing support to local researchers on resource scarcity in Pakistan, and explains how limited resources can help in overcoming health-related problems.
"Fundamentals of Health Economics" course under the supervision of internationally renowned teachers
Pakistan Institute of Living and Learning also offers a course with basic curriculum for health economic principles in Karachi, Pakistan. Because it is an emerging disciplinary course, that is why, it covers a wide range of economics, healthcare areas, econometrics, and research topics.
Mohsin Hassan Alvi
Pakistan Institute of Living and Learning