When it comes to overall health trends in Latin America, there’s a lot of information out there, and most of it is not exactly positive. For example, many countries, particularly Mexico, Chile and the Bahamas, have obesity rates well above 50 percent. Unfortunately, these numbers are also frequently paired with rising rates of diabetes and heart disease, among other problems.
But while some of the beliefs about the state of healthcare in Latin America are valid, others are out and out falsehoods. On occasion, our work in the healthcare space involves us identifying some of these commonly held beliefs and contrasting them with the realities.
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Myth #1: Latin American Healthcare Is Second-Rate
This myth is a holdover from an era that is rapidly disappearing. The reality is that Latin American healthcare in many areas is as cutting-edge and technologically advanced as what you’ll find in the U.S. and other Western nations. And what’s more, the costs are significantly lower, with costs as much as 50 percent or more when compared to the same procedures in the United States. There’s a reason that countries such as Mexico, Brazil and others are becoming hot medical tourism markets for American customers.
Myth #2: Latin America Lacks the Money for Healthcare Advances
One only has to look at recent trends to know that Latin American countries are investing heavily in healthcare. In fact, according to data from Global Health Intelligence (GHI), it’s one of the most rapidly growing healthcare markets in the world. For example, the market for ultrasound machines in Latin America is projected to grow to over $800 billion by 2021. Meanwhile, MRIs, radiopharmaceuticals and insulin delivery systems are all projected to crack the $1 billion level by 2021, as well.
Myth #3: Healthcare Problems in Latin America Are Showing Few Signs of Improvement
There’s no question that the media tends to focus on the bad news when it comes to healthcare in Latin America, but the reality is that there are a lot of positive trends to focus on, as well. For example, hospitals and medical facilities throughout Latin America are continuing to evolve and improve. Countries such as Brazil, Mexico, Chile and others have adopted nationwide electronic medical record (EMR) systems and are pushing aggressively to get their facilities to adopt them. The markets for many cutting-edge devices and machines are following suit. It all adds up to positive trends when you look at the future of Latin American healthcare.
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Addressing the Latin American Realities
Though negative myths abound, the reality about Latin American healthcare is that there are several positive trends, and many facilities are heavily invested in the equipment and devices needed to better serve their patients.
Contact Americas Market Intelligence to find more about how our LatAm healthcare market intelligence services can help you obtain rock-solid data and analysis to discover sales opportunities with medical devices, equipment and other segments of the market.