IXP Course: China; Healthcare in China: Opportunities in Innovation and Integration - Harvard Business School MBA Program

IXP Course: China; Healthcare in China: Opportunities in Innovation and Integration

Course Number 6025

Assistant Professor Arthur A. Daemmrich
Four on-campus meetings during Fall term (October 15 & 16, December 10 & 11 all from 5:30 - 7:30pm);
one on-campus meeting in Winter term (January 28, 2013 from 5:30 - 7:00pm)
January Term travel, Monday, January 7 through Friday, January 18, 2013
Program fee & travel costs (see details on financial aid eligibility)
1.5 credits applied toward Winter term requirements
Enrollment: Limited to 36 students

Career Focus

This course will be of particular interest to students who plan to lead, advise, or invest in companies in the healthcare sector with a current or anticipated future presence in China. The IXP will integrate learning about healthcare financing in an emergent market economy; public and private insurance; hospital-based and other care delivery; and biopharmaceutical and medical device research and development. Participants will gain exposure to a rapidly changing healthcare system poised for significant growth and develop an understanding of key barriers confronting domestic and international players. Overall, the Healthcare in China IXP will deepen your knowledge about healthcare systems, innovation and entrepreneurship, and healthcare finance.

Educational Objectives

China has undertaken significant healthcare reform in recent years in an effort to address dilemmas in funding and delivering care for a population of 1.35 billion. Just three years after a major healthcare plan was announced in 2009, basic social health insurance has expanded to cover nearly the full population (from a low point of 10% coverage in the 1990s). But the Chinese government plans additional reforms over the next 10 years that will affect every stakeholder in the healthcare system, domestically and internationally. Business leaders and government policymakers are debating core principles even as Chinese consumers rapidly increase their health spending. How can China improve its currently very uneven health care system, efficiently allocate resources, improve care quality, and satisfy demands for broader access? What forms of private insurance will complement, not undermine the public system? What kind of financing will sustain rapid progress in pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device research, and what regulatory innovations will help move products to market?

Through a series of classroom meetings and an immersion experience featuring team-based projects, the Healthcare in China IXP will explore conceptual and practical issues in the Chinese health sector. The course has several interconnected objectives that will underpin the classroom and immersion project activities:

  • Understand the challenges and opportunities for healthcare innovation in China and how diverse stakeholders in China view the future of healthcare industries.
  • Examine the core regulatory dilemmas associated with adverse selection, moral hazard, and public goods in China.
  • Analyze approaches to systems integration for regulation, payment (insurance), and care delivery that can continue to foster innovation.
  • Identify next steps in policy reform for China's health system.

Course Content and Organization

This China IXP will be structured in three parts as follows:

Overview and Introduction: We will meet for two class sessions in the fall to carry out system, stakeholder, and financial analyses of the Chinese health system, including the role of government regulation and state-run enterprises and opportunities and challenges facing multinationals in China and domestic healthcare innovators and entrepreneurs. These sessions will include international comparative perspective on health systems.

Projects: Participants will work on a project in a team of 4-6 students while on the IXP in China. Teams will develop initial project concepts and contacts during the fall prior to travel. Projects will begin in depth in Shanghai, and will require the development of a strategic concept and implementation plan for a partner firm based on fieldwork (observational and data collection and analysis) in Shanghai and Xi'an. Students will interact directly with local Chinese and multinational firms operating in China. Partner firms will include venture funds or private equity firms, insurance companies, pharmaceutical or biotech firms, clinical research organizations, hospitals, or others based on project team interests.

Topics: Student teams will focus on one topic area, with extensive opportunities to draw upon findings from other teams and to interact with other projects.

  1. Healthcare finance: venture capital / private equity / state-owned enterprises / international joint ventures, mergers, and acquisitions
  2. Health product innovation: pharmaceutical / biotechnology / medical devices
  3. Health insurance: private insurance offerings / medical information and privacy
  4. Healthcare operations and IT: hospital management / electronic medical records / health systems integration

Integration:Students will present their findings and recommendations to company executives, healthcare academics, and government officials at a capstone event in Shanghai. They also will present findings at the annual HBS Healthcare Conference in Boston in late January.



Course Credit and Fees

Students who successfully complete this China IXP will earn 1.5 course credits, which will be posted in the Winter term.

HBS will provide in-country logistics for IXPs (including accommodations, select meals, and local travel) but students will need to contribute a fee of $1,300 towards defraying a part of these costs. In addition, students are responsible for their international round-trip air travel to Shanghai, China. Students who have an existing financial aid application on file may submit for additional financial support to participate in this IXP. Students who have an existing financial aid application on file may submit for additional financial support to participate in this IXP. Please see the Financial Aid website for more information on financial support for IXP courses.

Please see the IXP website for information regarding student accommodations on IXP courses.