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As Costs Continue to Rise, An Era of Change in the Swiss Healthcare System Approaches


Lyfegen’s CFO, Michel Mohler, enlightens us on the recent measures presented by Switerland's Interior Minister Alain Berset against rising healthcare costs in Switzerland and what this means for Lyfegen.

In recent months it is difficult to ignore that various countries, also greatly due to the current pandemic, are challenging and revising their healthcare systems.

End of June, Nico reported on the Trump administration’s signed executive orders towards improving the healthcare system in the United States.

However, the wind is changing also in Switzerland as healthcare costs continue to rise. On August 19th, Switzerland’s Interior Minister Alain Berset (who also has healthcare under his responsibility) proposed a package of measures which would save the country approximately 1 Billion Swiss Francs (CHF), whilst boosting efficiency and the quality of health services.

The proposed plan includes the following measures:

1) Specialist care will only be covered if the patient first consults a general practitioner, HMO practice or a telemedical center. This will increase transparency and cost awareness throughout the entire process, ensuring that the patient only gets the treatment he/she needs from the right healthcare professional.

2) Networks of experts for coordinated care of chronic diseases are to be created on national level in order to improve the quality and efficiency of treatments, minimizing error in treatment.

3) Access to innovative but costly medication is improved through the legal consolidation of pricing-models. Pharma companies have to reimburse part of the costs to insurance companies however, until now, these were not regulated by the government. The legally set pricing models for Switzerland will be defined for reimbursement on price, sales volume, or pay-for-performance.

Overall, Berset aims at a closer cooperation between different players in the healthcare industry, increasing transparency and cost awareness.

What does this mean for Lyfegen?

Pay-for-performance is getting national recognition and legal regulation in the Swiss system. The proposed measures are now sent to cantons, political parties, institutions and organisations for consultation before the government presents its bill to parliament.

That said, this is a big step in the right direction for Lyfegen. Pay-for-performance would become a nationally recognized pricing model, meaning that Insurances will be more likely to adopt this model going forward – making the solutions of Lyfegen a necessity. Lyfeapp would allow for a facilitated methodology to collect data necessary for the value-based contracts on our Lyfevalue contracting solution. Lyfegen being the key pillar between pharma companies, insurance companies, and patients.

While we wait to see if this proposal is passed in parliament, we can now state with absolute confidence that Minister Berset’s clarity on pricing models goes hand in hand with Lyfegen’s mission: Doing what’s right for patients!

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