GPC 2023 Theme

Innovative patient partnerships at the heart of global health advancement

Meaningful Innovative Partnerships

Sir William Osler said “The good physician treats the disease; the great physician treats the patient who has the disease. And he later added that he who studies medicine without books sails an uncharted sea, but he who studies medicine without patients does not go to sea at all!

A humanised, compassionate and patient centric health system will treat the patient with the disease and ensure meaningful patient engagement at all levels.  

Meaningful patient partnerships (MPPs) help disrupt the ‘us and them’ relationship dynamic in the healthcare value chain. MPPs have shared decision-making that helps find optimum solutions by co-designing and co-producing the health technology or service delivery and management. During the COVID19 pandemic there was a sea change in the collaborative dynamic in many health systems as we changed the way we worked together. 

The pandemic helped us develop new agilities and capacity to adapt, communicate and collaborate between public-private-patient stakeholders. We established innovative collaborative relationships at the heart of our healthcare value chains to prioritise patient and health professional safety and quality of health care. 

The best outcomes during COVID19 vaccine development and immunisation programmes were achieved where the pharmaceutical industry, regulators, health professional bodies, governments and society worked with patients in unison at all levels. 

A collaborative relationship within the healthcare value chain starts even before we commence research and development of a health technology. It starts with patients as co‐investigators within research teams. The MPP then brings everyone within the health technology design, production, and delivery together at the earliest to establish a shared purpose, and then work to a shared ambition, and shared leadership. This co-design and co-produce approach develops shared ownership and shared responsibility throughout the value chain. We then celebrate success and mitigate any challenges or adverse outcomes through a joint timely and relevant action.

Innovative patient partnerships at the heart of global health advancement

The pandemic revealed many fault lines in our health systems. Most of these fault lines were bridged through innovative co-creation through meaningful public, private, and patient partnerships.

The pandemic revealed that the best control outcomes were achieved where we had robust meaningful Patient Partnerships amongst the whole of the society, government, industry, and patient organisations.

The rapid research and development of vaccines based on the new health technologies (mRNA and adenoviral vector platforms) revealed that early and meaningful patient engagement in research, development and regulatory affairs led to early development and acceptance of vaccines.

Multi-stakeholder partnerships are critical to global health governance and advancement over the next decade within our pandemic preparedness measure.Innovative patient partnerships amongst the multi-stakeholders are critical. The kind of innovative partnerships GPC 2023 envisages to celebrate and recommend, although not an exhaustive list, are multi-stakeholder patient partnerships in:

  • Health system governance 
  • Medicines and health devices research and development
  •  Medicines and health devices regulatory affairs
  • Health economics, health technology assessment and value-based healthcare
  • Health professional education and development
  • Patient safety (Global Patient Safety Action Plan)
  • Health services delivery
  • Health facility and infrastructure design and operations