Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People’s Republic of China and operates under a “one country, two systems” framework of government under which it exercises autonomy for its affairs except in foreign affairs and defense. Hong Kong is a prosperous, densely populated, regional financial and trade center. It boasts a well-developed, high-quality system of public and private hospitals that together provide over 31,000 in-patient hospital beds and a comprehensive range of medical and health services by the public and private sectors for a population in excess of 7 million. There are about 44 public hospitals and 185 clinics managed by the Hospital Authority (HA) and 12 private hospitals in Hong Kong. Hong Kong currently subsidizes approximately 95 percent of the total cost of health care for Hong Kong residents. As the government continues public consultation on comprehensive healthcare reform, it will emphasize upgrading and expanding its health care system to keep pace with demographic changes, and consolidate its position as a prime medical center for the region.
Demands on Hong Kong’s healthcare systems are increasing because of an aging population and an increase in the prevalence of chronic diseases; the Hong Kong Government has also invested significantly in prevention and rapid-response to contagious diseases such as SARS and Avian Influenza.
For the above reasons, the Hong Kong Government will continue its active program to re-develop its existing hospitals and to build new hospitals.
From a regulatory standpoint, Hong Kong maintains different government oversight and standards than mainland China. However, establishing a foothold in Hong Kong has strategic advantages to exploring mainland opportunities. Overseas companies that want to enter the Hong Kong (and China) market should establish a local sales presence. Establishing a sales team and a distribution network among the public and private hospitals in Hong Kong and in the mainland can be done through direct market entry or by working with established distributors. Many Hong Kong agents and distributors have their networks of offices and contacts in mainland China.
Major planned projects include: a Children’s Specialist Hospital, North Lantau Hospital, Tin Shui Wai Hospital, Caritas Medical Center Phase II, Prince of Wales Hospital, Tsueng Kwan O Hospital, Yan Chai Hospital, and the Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital (a private hospital). These upcoming hospital p rojects will present opportunities for U.S. suppliers of hospital services, technologies and advanced medical equipment.
By Rose Mak & Rachel Tang