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News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

‘Treat the patient as a patient, not a disease’: Senior leaders from Kidney Health Australia and AstraZeneca speak up on World Kidney Day

Health Industry Hub | March 11, 2024 |

Pharma News: Leading up to World Kidney Day on March 14th, Chris Forbes, CEO of Kidney Health Australia and Martin Haigh, Business Unit Director of BioPharmaceuticals at AstraZeneca joined Health Industry Hub to explore the profound impact of the disease, with one in six hospital admissions attributed to chronic kidney disease and a substantial economic toll of $9.9 billion annually.

The interview began by exploring this year’s World Kidney Day theme Advancing equitable access to care and optimal medication practice and how it resonated with each organisation. Mr Forbes delved into the policy and advocacy initiatives that Kidney Health Australia is focusing on in the current year, including key areas highlighted in their pre-budget submission.

“We know that to be successful in addressing kidney health, we need to work with the various comorbidities and treat the patient as a patient not as a disease,” commented Mr Forbes.

AstraZeneca’s contributions to kidney health innovation and research, both locally and globally, were highlighted by Mr Haigh. The interview also touched upon the desired changes in healthcare delivery for kidney care, including the role of primary care programs and the expansion of digital health initiatives to reach diverse consumers.

“There’s a better opportunity for a more holistic approach to care,” expressed Mr Haigh. “This focus on primary care and early detection is just so important because we can have an impact for the future so that we don’t get a tsunami of patients who end up on dialysis. The time to act is now.”

The final topic addressed how clinicians and the industry can better align with the patient voice to “squeeze the disease” and advocate for meaningful change.

“The best outcome for patients is to not be on dialysis, because every day not on dialysis is a good day,” Mr Forbes explained.

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