Indonesia Records Highest Prevalence of Smoking Among ASEAN Nations

Smoking prevalence in Indonesia reached 39.9% in 2015.

July 2018, by Gervasius Samosir

Indonesia was recorded to have the highest prevalence of smoking compared to other major ASEAN nations. This become one of the major reasons that drive the rising healthcare cost which has been outpacing the growth in GDP per capita in the country.

The report, titled as "Asean Healthcare Challenge", analyzes the factors behind rising healthcare costs, value opportunities, as well as measurable actions to improve the industry overtime. Smoking activities, overweight and obesity was identified as three risk factors that potentially drive the increase of healthcare cost challenge in ASEAN-6 countries: Malaysia, Philippines, Vietnam, Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia.

The report recorded that smoking prevalence in Indonesia reached 39.9% in 2015, while its overweight and obesity levels were at 24.4% and 5.7% respectively. In addition, the report also projected that the Indonesian elder population would grow by 3.97% annually (CAGR) until 2040, driving healthcare demand in the country.

As the health risk factors could meet the rising elder population by 2040, the divide between health expenditure and GDP per capita is expected to see unprecedented challenges. Indonesia still saw narrow gap (less than 2%) between health expenditure and GDP per capita in 2017, compared to the other five major Southeast Asia countries, despite the growth in health spending per person which has started to outpace GDP per capita since 2016, 

YCP Solidiance's report mentioned that the ASEAN-6 nations are facing an unprecedented rise in healthcare cost through the upcoming decade. From currently around USD 420 billion, the total healthcare spending is projected to increase, reaching USD 740 billion by 2025. The governments and healthcare industry stakeholders should focus on addressing The USD 320 billion increment, sustaining the future of the healthcare industry.

Adding to that, due to other economic budgetary requirements, such as the need for economic stimulus and massive infrastructure plans, governments of Indonesia and other ASEAN-6 nations are seen no longer have the capability to allocate big proportion of their budgets to healthcare spending. 

ASEAN 6 nations are currently in a perfect 'middle field' between underdeveloped nations in third world countries and over-spenders among the wealthier nations, in terms of healthcare spending versus achieved average life expectancy. Therefore, it is important for ASEAN nations to find ways in order to increase healthy living years of its people by tackling the key drivers of disabilities, aiming to establish a more efficient healthcare system, 

Download the full report on ASEAN healthcare challenge.

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