Feb. 27, 2023
Expanding Healthcare Business in Southeast Asia with Medical Data Analysis and Use
– Collaborating with Singapore's Roland Berger to Keep Down Medical Costs and Ensure Their Appropriateness
Sumitomo Corporation has entered into a collaboration agreement with Roland Berger Pte. Ltd. (Head Office: Singapore; President: Damien Dujacquier), a strategic consulting firm having expertise in the use of medical data, to expand its healthcare business in Southeast Asia. Leveraging Roland Berger's expertise, Sumitomo Corporation will launch services that help keep medical costs down with the use of medical data analysis from fiscal 2023. Building on the collaboration, we will also lay and expand the foundations of healthcare systems in Southeast Asia.
The quality improvement and supply of medical services in Southeast Asia have recently failed to keep pace with the demand for medical care, which is rising in line with the aging population and increase in lifestyle-related diseases. People being unable to receive suitable medical services or having to wait for extended periods to be seen by a physician are among the issues that have surfaced. Meanwhile, advances in drug and medical technology which are one of the factors of causing medical costs to climb, imposing excessive burdens on patients, corporations, and insurance companies.
Furthermore, the widespread use of smartphones and the development big data, AI, and other technologies have driven the diversification of access to medical care, including online medical care and home medical care, as well as its individualization through personalized medical care such as genomic medicine. Additionally, the progress made in correcting the information asymmetry between physicians and patients is accelerating subjectification, which refers to the shifting of the subject of medical care to patients themselves. While these changes in medical care demands will continue to proceed, mechanisms for the meaningful use of data have not been sufficiently developed in Southeast Asia.
As an initiative to solve these issues, Sumitomo Corporation has operated managed care (*) services in Vietnam and Malaysia. We will analyze and use the medical data obtained through our healthcare business to keep medical costs down and ensure their appropriateness. More specifically, we will consider ways of guiding people to fair-priced hospitals and clinics and providing programs for health and medication guidance according to their chronic disease status using personal mobile phone applications.
In its medium-term management plan "SHIFT 2023," Sumitomo Corporation lists "healthcare" as one of its next-generation growth strategy themes. We have already worked in a wide variety of healthcare businesses such as management of drugstore chains with prescription departments, organization of a community-based integrated care system, and drug discovery support. Going forward, as a service facilitator between companies/private medical insurance companies and medical institutions, we are committed to providing high-quality and efficient healthcare services around the world. In addition, we aim to contribute toward improving standards of living by building a sustainable healthcare system with a view to entering into peripheral businesses such as drug distribution, medical data utilization, and DX promotion in harmony with medical institutions.
- Managed care: Managed care is a system for providing medical care that has spread to countries with relatively undeveloped public healthcare systems. Under this scheme, healthcare services are provided through a tripartite collaboration among companies/private insurance companies, TPA services, and medical providers.
Sumitomo Corporation's Managed Care Business
Sumitomo Corporation has been operating its managed care business in Southeast Asia with the aim of building sustainable healthcare systems that help improve individual quality of life. Sumitomo Corporation invested in Malaysia-based PM Care and Health Connect Holdings in 2019 and Vietnam-based Insmart in 2021, and established SC Healthcare Holdings, a holding company for the managed care business, in Malaysia in 2022. In addition to medical cost settlement management and medical infrastructure, which were offered before our investment, we launched online medical care and pharmaceutical services and promoted value-added services, such as health promotion programs, to advance the managed care business and solve social issues.
Consequently, demand for the managed care services of the companies that we invest in and operate continues to expand as the healthcare market grows and as corporations and private-sector insurance companies face an increasing need to hold medical costs down. SC Healthcare Holdings has the largest market share in Malaysia in the sector. By continuing to expand the business through medical data analysis and use, we will aim to keep medical costs handled in Malaysia down by about 30 billion yen by 2030 while proactively considering operating business in other regions in Southeast Asia, such as Singapore and the Philippines.
Founded in Germany, Roland Berger is a global strategic consulting firm that operates 51 offices in 35 countries for more than 1,000 clients around the world. Its offices in major cities in Southeast Asia are providing locally rooted support. In the healthcare sector in Southeast Asia, Roland Berger has a wealth of project experience across a wide range of themes, including new entry strategy, sales strategy, business restructuring, and cost optimization. It has broad expertise acquired through supporting private companies and engaging in medical policy formulation with public organizations.