Why the Cost of the Liver Transplantation in India Low When Compared to Developed Countries Like the USA, UK and Singapore?
Understanding Liver Transplantation
Liver Transplantation is the procedure undertaken to replace the diseased liver of the patient with a healthy liver of the donor. Transplanted liver from the donor can either be whole or partial healthy liver that is dependent upon the requirement of the liver transplantation candidate.
Factors that influence the cost of liver transplantation procedure-
- Human Resource Cost- The cost of skilled labour in India is comparatively way lower when compared to countries like the USA, UK, Singapore, Iraq and Japan. For instance, the approximate wage of paramedical personnel in India is USD 250, and that in the USA is 3450. Factors affecting the wide variation in the price are the availability of more human resources in India due to the larger population, inclination of the pupil to pursue medicine as their field of study as India is the land of Sushruta Samhita. In western countries, up to 90% of the total expenditure is incurred by healthcare providers to provide human resource cost to employees whereas in India 25 to 30% of total spending of the healthcare providers is allotted in human resource compensation.
From the patient’s point of view, the inclination is often directly proportional to the place where there exists lower cost in the treatment procedures provided the high quality of treatment is provided to the patient.
- Economies of Scale– Two factors, population and expenses or expenditure incurred by healthcare providers (in infrastructure, machinery, equipment, Sterilize rooms, MRI, Cavitron Ultra Sonic Aspiration System, Argon Plasma Coagulation System, Harmonic Scalpel, Cellsaver, High-end Liver Imaging &Reconstruction Systems) are related to each other. As in India, the number of patients undergoing treatment is way higher when compared to the USA. The approximate ratio of patients referring and getting liver transplanted from India and the USA is 1:10.
So, the overall expenses from the patient’s end get lower in India when compared to the developed and less populated countries like the USA.
- Generic medicines Vs Branded Medications- Availability of generic medication in India is widespread when compared to the medication distribution scenario in the western countries. That ultimately leads to lower cost concerning the expenditure of patients for availing medicines during and after the procedure of liver transplantation. Cost-benefit follows in the countries where there is the dominant existence of generic medications in the market. Statistically speaking the outcomes concerning bioequivalence testing, more often than not generic medication does not compromise in serving the required deliverables expected from the medications.
- The low rate of Litigation in India– The Indian political scenario is flexible for patients, ensuring the maintenance of quality and non-toleration of low-level medical deliverables from healthcare provider’s end. A low rate of litigation increases the focus of the healthcare providers to the prime areas to target upon. That not only is cost-effective but also makes the journey of liver transplantation patient time-saving and successful.
- Penetration of Health Insurance and Market Dynamics– Health insurance is more dominant in western countries when compared to developed countries like India. So the tug-war of cost estimation for liver transplantation surgery occurs between health insurance companies and healthcare providers which increase the chances of more cost estimate with respect to all procedures involved in the surgery. Whereas in India the fixation of the cost is directly proportional to the pocket or financial stability of the patient which results in higher benefits with respect to the cost incurred by the patient in the medical journey.