The precarious balance between 'supply' and 'demand' for health care: the increasing global demand for rehabilitation service for individuals living with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is becoming a critical health concern that affects people living in high-, middle-, and low-income countries. Pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) has been demonstrated to be a clinical and cost-effective approach to minimizing the effects of COPD. Despite global predictions of an increased incidence of COPD, there continues to be an important misalignment between the demand and the supply of PR services. In other words, only a small proportion of individuals with COPD who require, or would benefit from, PR programs are receiving them on the global stage. This issue may be even more pronounced in middle- and low-income countries where the burden of disease is reported to be highest, and where access to health services and trained health professionals appears be to lowest. Given this predicament, we suggest that PR services must be viewed as an effective way in which to generate clinical efficiencies within health systems, and has the potential to relieve pressure on acute care systems. Although implementing PR programs require commitment and financial investment, we argue that such investments would yield important social and aggregated financial cost savings in the long term.
Landry, MD; Hamdan, E; Al Mazeedi, S; Brooks, D
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