Telemedicine, medical deserts… What the candidates for the presidential election are proposing

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Is France still the champion of health innovation? Can teleconsultation fight against medical deserts? How to guarantee equal access to therapeutic innovations? Doctissimo collected proposals from presidential candidates on this subject.

With the Covid-19 crisis, the subject of the development of digital health and better access to therapeutic innovations is back in the debates. One question in particular remains: would the acceleration of digital health and teleconsultation be a means of combating medical deserts? If some of the candidates on the right believe that the development of telemedicine is a good thing to promote and guarantee access to medicine, those on the left are more vigilant vis-à-vis this democratization of digital health. At issue: the possible use of personal health data.

Regarding access to innovative therapies, the challenge is generally to be financial, with coverage of several tens or hundreds of thousands of euros per patient. A fact that raises the question of the financing of these innovations and the way in which they can be guaranteed for all without undermining the current health system. For the candidates on the left, we are talking about “socialization of the pharmaceutical industry”of “drug pricing” or “independence from pharmaceutical lobbies”. On the right, we talk about a fight against fraud and waste of access to care, or even more clarity on the part of pharmaceuticals.

Digital health and therapeutic innovations: what the left says

Anne Hidalgo plans to make health a sector to innovate and re-industrialize. She hears “overcoming neurodegenerative diseases by 2035”. According to the socialist, reforms would be applied to “drug policy, and will act at the international level, so that the prices of drugs are related to the cost of their design and their production”. As for the democratization of telemedicine, “confidence in digital technology will be there if we develop the new tools with the users themselves and by providing all the guarantees in terms of security. Our country must be at the forefront in this area, we have the necessary know-how in our companies and our start-ups”, she concludes.

Nathalie Arthaud believes that the digitization of health records is a good thing. But, she qualifies: “It also takes time to know how to use all the data, but without additional doctors and nurses, this is to the detriment of care and the relationship with patients”. The candidate hopes for international medical innovation: “Why limit our ambition to solely French medical innovation? In medicine, as in all scientific and technological fields, progress results from the collaboration of the best teams in the world. I don’t believe that patients anxiously awaiting new treatments have any interest in seeing borders slow down medical innovation. I want everyone to have access to the best medicine and the best treatments that exist.”

Jean-Luc Melenchon would like to “get out of the influence of pharmaceutical laboratories”. For it, “we must change the balance of power by creating a public drug cluster, the first building block of a public health industry cluster, to ensure independence and guarantee transparency at all stages of the drug and health product journey. health.” The People’s Union candidate wants to ensure the relocation of drugs, allow transparency on research funding and create a research unit. For access to new innovative therapies, he indicates that he wants “guarantee full coverage of care and prevention services while ensuring that unnecessary expenses are avoided”, he says, mentioning the financing of the controversial drug, the Mediator. Finally, it proposes to prevent the commodification of health data by regulating the future use of artificial intelligence technologies in health, for example. “Their algorithms will have to be transparent, explicit and consultable by all with specified and limited tasks”he explains.

Yannick Jadot joins the other left-wing candidates in the desire for more transparency in pharmaceutical laboratories. “Our priority will be to impose transparency on the entire drug production chain”he says. “We will rebuild the bases of negotiation with the pharmaceutical industries on the requirements of transparency and access, commensurate with their social responsibilities, and which will condition the public money from which they benefit”. Regarding the digital transition in the field of health, the environmental candidate intends to promote digital equipment for all “through endowments at very social rates”. He concludes by emphasizing vigilance in the use of health data.

Philippe Poutou for its part hopes for a “socialization of the pharmaceutical industry under citizen control”. As for the question of access to innovative therapies, the candidate of the New Anti-Capitalist Party believes that a “public research, the lifting of patents and a public pharmaceutical industry will also make it possible to avoid the explosion of costs whose only beneficiaries are the shareholders”. Finally, with regard to telemedicine, the latter is firm: “Teleconsultations or telemedicine can play a positive role, if they are a complement and not a means of replacing the effective presence of professionals. They are not, for example, the solution to the extension of medical deserts”. He also recalls that he opposes the creation of MyHealthSpacea digital health record set up in 2022.

On the right, various proposals

Nicolas Dupont-Aignan recognizes a delay of France in the field of research: “France’s inability to create a vaccine in its own laboratories has clearly reflected our downgrading in the field of health research”. For access to care, the candidate of Stand up France plans to “fight against fraud”. He indicates that he wants to broaden the conditions of access to the complementary CMU for those over 65, change all vital cards and replace them with biometrics, abolish state medical aid (AME) and finally condition access to social assistance to the desire for integration into society. As for the medical deserts, he wishes “create a scholarship for medical students in return for which they will commit to settling in an under-resourced area for their first 5 years and enable doctors settling in medical deserts.”

Marine Le Pen suggests that a “significant financial effort is necessary for research and therapeutic innovation”. The candidate of National Gathering also asks “more clarity from pharmaceutical companies regarding their investments and reinvestments in the research and development of truly innovative therapeutics, their production costs and the justification of the price of their drugs”. For this candidate, for whom telemedicine and tele-expertise in general are an integral part of her program, it is important to ensure “the development of telemedicine tools that can be implemented by advanced practice nurses (APN) in regions under-endowed with doctors”.

Valerie Pécresse wish “to restore visibility and stability to actors through voting”. It also offers to “launch a major European alliance for research and innovation in health, particularly in the field of artificial intelligence, because it is also on the scale of Europe that our innovations and our sovereignty must be deployed”. On the subject of digital health and teleconsultations, candidate LR is “convinced” digital potential for health.

The rest of the candidates

Emmanuel Macron would like to put France back in the rank of “health innovation champion” by continuing to develop biotechnologies and biomedicines. He already believes that he guarantees equal access to therapeutic care and wishes to continue in this vein: “We have recently further improved concrete solutions to guarantee French patients access to the latest therapeutic innovations: thanks to the reform of early access which came into force last July, innovative treatments can be deployed up to two years upstream. marketing authorization.” Finally, the candidate LREM think that “the development of teleconsultation in medical deserts would make it possible to limit inequalities in access to care and improve prevention”.

John Lassalle for his part, wishes to be inspired “of the 1960s, when 5% of the state budget was allocated to science”, he recalls. The party candidate Let’s resist! would like to launch tenders for Pharmaceutical research on orphan diseases. According to the candidate, “it’s about directing researchers towards the most urgent health issues and no longer towards the most lucrative markets”. He says he also wants “liberate knowledge from public research, guaranteeing its free online access”.

The candidates of CPF Fabien Roussel and Reconquest! Eric Zemmour did not respond to our questionnaire, which is why their proposals do not appear in our article. You can find all the answers to our questionnaire on the health issues of the different candidates: Emmanuel Macron, Marine Le Pen, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, Valérie Pécresse, Yannick Jadot, Anne Hidalgo, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, Philippe Poutou and Nathalie Arthaud .

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Telemedicine, medical deserts… What the candidates for the presidential election are proposing

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