Douglas Corley is the CEO and founder of DHB Global. In this episode of the China Paradigm podcast, Douglas shares insights from China’s healthcare industry. Being an American and having worked in top-level Chinese hospitals and healthcare research institutes gave Douglas a strong position to start his consulting career.
How DHB helps western healthcare players enter and collaborate with players in China’s healthcare industry.
If a western institution or healthcare company is looking to enter China, DHB will help them understand market segmentation. In the podcast, Douglas goes into detail on how the healthcare industry in China can be divided into 9 main categories. This helps Western players target the markets, patients, and/or level of research they wish to engage with. When DHB’s client knows what category they want to target, DHB can help them find strategic domestic partners, and/or advise them on where to set up operations.
China’s healthcare industry and its R&D institutes are concentrated in thousands of science parks throughout the country. Certain parks specialize in China’s healthcare industry, so knowing the right park to go to is important in securing government grants and support. DHB also helps with the grants process. Foreign healthcare players looking to enter the healthcare industry can obtain a wide range of benefits that Douglas expands on in the podcast. Below is an example of how they helped one foreign firm enter China’s healthcare industry and begin manufacturing products for the healthcare market in China.
“DHB worked with a huge publicly traded company who had a very novel way of diagnosing and managing chronic disease. They wanted to come to China. DHB did market segmentation, SWOT analysis, client interviews, commercial partner interviews, and academic partner interviews. The pre-market process also involved introducing the client to investors and institutes where they could secure grants. DHB helped them set up manufacturing processes in China. The process lasted about 18 months, and they now have a legal entity in China. Their manufacturing is split between China and India. They are still waiting for product approval because that takes anywhere between 12 and 36 months in China. ”
An overview of the Chinese healthcare industry
Douglas gives an overview of the general state of China’s healthcare industry and how rapidly it has developed. He also talks about how government initiatives have shaped the healthcare market in China. Douglas talks about the strengths and weaknesses of China’s healthcare industry. One example of how the government tries to drive innovation is the Healthy China 2030 plan. The implementation of this plan will mean an increasing demand for private healthcare facilities. The plan will also affect the healthcare market in China: there will be an increased number of well-trained doctors and nurses demanded and an increased number of elderly care facilities. The future healthcare market in China will also require more private health insurance companies and increasing levels of health-related technology. To incentivize foreign players into China’s healthcare industry, the government will offer tax incentives and access to talent and capital.
“About 90% of all hospital beds in China are in public hospitals. It is a government aim to increase the share of private hospitals up to 20 – 25%. Also, in the last 3 or so years, the government has started incentivizing and training people in hospital admin roles which will have a positive impact on the quality of hospital treatment. Johns Hopkins partnered with a university in Beijing to offer a course in this. Also, all of the famous doctors work in public hospitals. ”Douglas Corley, CEO and founder of DHB Global
Things to be cautious of in the healthcare industry
Without a proper strategy, foreign healthcare players can encounter several issues in China’s healthcare industry. Although the government made progress in these problems, companies can come undone when entering the healthcare market in China.