On Sunday, September 5, 2020, the 21st Healthcare Network meeting was held at the Osaka Campus Virtual Studio. The Network meetings had been held face-to-face since its establishment in 2014. Deepening understanding of the contents of presentations and issues through discussions by Professor Nagasawa, the faculty member in charge, presentations on work issues and initiatives in which the participants are engaged were given. However, due to the prolonged impact of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the virtual session was held for the first time in Osaka, following a virtual session in Nagoya.
The pandemic, Coronavirus Infections of Infectious Diseases (COVID-19), which is affecting every industry in the world, is of course affecting the medical industry in various ways. The Healthcare Network focused on the pharmaceutical industry and discussed the various changes caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The theme was "The expansion of healthcare and the future of the pharmaceutical industry".
The biggest challenge in the medical industry caused by corona was the lack of digitalization. In other industries, with Corona, digitalization is progressing, office space is being reduced, and paperless operations are being promoted. However, the barrier of not being able to provide support beyond medical care online is making it difficult to balance online and face-to-face operations. However, with Corona, there were not only challenges, but also medical aspects that were improved. It has reduced the number of patients undergoing excessive tests, which has led to a reduction in medical costs. In addition, there were cases of pharmaceutical companies that mainly provide anti-cancer drugs for chronic diseases and other conditions that were hardly affected by Corona. As many issues were brought to light, all pharmaceutical companies realized that it is not enough to simply provide drugs, but that companies cannot survive unless they are able to provide information in addition to drugs tailored to the situation at hand. In addition, it can be said that foresight is necessary because the method of solution varies greatly depending on when the goal of problem solving is set.
Participants in the Healthcare Network come from a wide range of industries, including consulting, manufacturing, distribution, and service industries, in addition to those working in the healthcare industry. Discussions with people from various industries and professions provide healthcare professionals with new ideas and insights by exposing them to the way of thinking of other industries, and the program is used as a place for mutual exchange, networking, and learning that continues not only during the course of study but also after completion.