Potentially, Europe and China have complementarities that could help each other face their specific needs in the long run in the healthcare sector. In particular, China would benefit from gaining knowledge and expertise from European countries at different levels. From how to project and run a universal system; how to plan a specific care program for its ageing population; to the use of western medicine to cope with new and improved medical needs of the population.
Europe could “export” to China solutions, best practices and thus find business opportunities. At the same time, China could export to Europe practices and approaches of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that could be cost saving and effective in specific pathologies.
In the specific, the researchers in the social science and humanities area will compare the European and Chinese healthcare systems at different levels, including value systems and ethical issues.
The economic expert will specifically analyse the integration reached between China and Europe in the healthcare related industries (technologies, pharmaceutical, and other). Foreign direct investments and trade flow trends will be examined, at regional and provincial levels. The typical cost-benefit tools will be used to evaluate the economic impact of integrating Western Medicine (WM) and TCM practices, supporting the medical team of experts.
The legal instruments will define obstacles and plausible solutions that can be generated by the regulatory environment, as well as appropriate solutions to enhance collaboration both at institutional, medical practices and business levels.
The team of experts in the medical field will investigate best practices of traditional medical systems using a modern science framework. The team will develop a process of recognition and scientific validation of TCM versus Complementary Alternative Medicine (CAM) at different levels as recommended by the World Health Organization Traditional medicine Strategy 2003-2005. This strategy includes the following indicators:
- policy, i.e. integrate TM/CAM with national health care systems, as appropriate, by developing and implementing national TM/CAM policies and programs;
- safety, efficacy and quality, i.e. promote the safety, efficacy and quality of TM/CAM by expanding the knowledgebase on TM/CAM, and by providing guidance on regulatory and quality assurance standards;
- access, i.e. increase the availability and affordability of TM/CAM, as appropriate, with an emphasis on access for poor populations;
- rational use, i.e. promote therapeutically sound use of appropriate TM/CAM by providers and consumers.