Integrating the patient perspective

Towards a 360° approach to healthcare

  • Publication
  • January 15, 2024

The blind spot in healthcare: the patient’s perspective

Ultimately, healthcare revolves around patient interests. However, the policy focus is historically on the healthcare providers, not on the service recipients — the patients. The patient perspective is insufficiently – and certainly not systematically – accounted for in medical practice and health policies. And while the healthcare system in Belgium is widely recognised as good, most patients will have experienced situations that could or should have gone better.

This is why patient organisations are today promoting a 360° approach that combines individual and collective medical and patient perspectives.

“Patients are not just people ‘undergoing’ treatment. They can actively participate and contribute, gathering knowledge, providing day-to-day guidance, and moving policy forward.”

Stefan GijsselsChair of the Patient Expert Center

Michèle Paque, PwC Belgium’s healthcare and life sciences specialist, spoke with Stefan Gijssels, Chair of the Patient Expert Center, to explore the importance of patient insights and perspectives in healthcare treatment, outcomes and policy.

Stefan outlines why optimal care is possible only when healthcare providers and patients are equally involved in shaping medical practice and policy; after all, it’s about the patients’ outcomes and quality of life. They know best what works and what doesn’t.

He notes that integrating the patient perspective requires a mindshift for many people in health services and related organisations: a shift towards patient-centricity. The ultimate objective is to create an environment in which the integration of the patient perspective becomes a natural process for medico-professional partners.

He details what this integration and interaction means in practice: how patients can be active in their own treatment and what support systems they and their families need to make this happen. He describes the benefits of patient organisations, beyond individual patient support: gathering collective intelligence and systematic reporting through ‘medicovigilance’, and pushing larger policy issues.

Stefan argues for the building and implementation of disease-specific medical plans and dashboards, developed collaboratively by all stakeholders. Finally, he outlines the important goals of patient organisations: the conservation of therapeutic value outside the hospital context and the increase of therapeutic value by leveraging collective intelligence.

Stefan Gijssels

Stefan Gijssels

Chair of the Patient Expert Center

How does integrating the patient voice within a 360° approach improve healthcare?

Read our interview with Stefan Gijssels here

Contact us

Matthias Reyntjens

Matthias Reyntjens

Partner, Platforms & Industries Leader, Consulting Lead, PwC Belgium

Tel: +32 476 44 53 92

Jan Debaere

Jan Debaere

Partner, Health Industries Lead, PwC Belgium

Tel: +32 473 92 46 11

Michele Paque

Michele Paque

Senior Advisor Life Sciences & Healthcare, PwC Belgium

Tel: +32 477 60 50 51

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