Russian policymakers are driving significant changes to the national healthcare agenda, as the government balances a continued struggle against COVID-19 with longer-term healthcare spending priorities. Russia has significantly delayed target completion dates for its National Health Projects, even as healthcare spending levels will remain at historically high levels, with the COVID-19 response remaining a key factor in its overall healthcare strategy. As healthcare stakeholders reassess the medium-term priorities for the healthcare system and the healthcare industry, the federal government is increasing its oversight role over funding and procurement policies, which will retain a localization bias over the coming years.  

COVID-19 tolerance strategy will drive a gradual vaccination strategy and solid public healthcare financing. Russian healthcare authorities have responded to the COVID-19 crisis by significantly increasing outlays for healthcare, which have remained elevated over the last year, despite significant disruptions to patient treatment pathways. Despite this, the government remains focused on driving economic normalization and pursuing a gradual—if halting—COVID-19 vaccination strategy. 

Government adjusts goals and reassesses priorities for National Health Projects. The Russian government is reassessing its long-term National Health Projects strategy, by significantly delaying its medium-term population health outcomes and reassessing the long-term priorities of its programs. The government remains committed to bolstering investments in primary care, but other key priorities will be reassessed over the coming months. 

Relative success of domestic manufacturing and sales will buoy the healthcare sector. The performance of the domestic pharmaceutical and medical device industries has proven remarkable over the last year, as government policies and patient behavior drove sales volumes that proved remarkable compared to similar markets. As the economy continues to gather strength and public sector budgets remain stable, the outlook remains positive, though increased localization measures are likely.

Actions for Business Professionals 

  • Re-evaluate demand expectations and sales strategies over the medium term against shifting healthcare priorities among public payers and recovery timelines for private providers. 
  • Pressure-test assumptions through scenario-based methodologies, preparing for new initiatives to expand market access as well as growing pressures on pricing and reimbursement. 
  • Evaluate how an expanded approach to supply chain localization for the pharmaceutical, medical device, and diagnostics sectors by Russian policymakers and regulators could reshape regional supply chain decisions and localization investments.

Our experts Mark McNamee, Director of Europe Research, and Antonio Martinez, Director of Global Healthcare Research, recently held a webinar focused on Russia and its healthcare outlook for 2021, including topics such as:

  • Russia’s COVID-19 strategy, including vaccination strategy 
  • Recent trends in public and private healthcare spending 
  • Future of National Healthcare projects and other major public health priorities 

Watch the full webinar presentation below: 

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