Letter from the Editor
Upturn? Downturn? The Usual?
We keep talking about the good times coming to an end, what with the cost of drug
development reaching untold heights, the patent cliff on the horizon, the regulatory
climate getting tougher, HCPs being more difficult to reach, patients becoming more
demanding, our image sinking by the day, and…
Hold on there a second. Let’s flip the script a little and look at the other side.
The health of this country, and in fact the global population, is steadily getting better.
True, lifestyle-related diseases like obesity and diabetes are on the increase, but other
conditions have come under control or been eradicated. And every time we hear of
an impending disaster – swine flu, avian flu, Zika virus – it turns out that the hard-
working scientists, governments and organizations mobilized against it manage to head off the worst and
keep it contained.
And while everything from Brexit to the U.S. presidential race has investors tied up in knots, our industry is
growing in revenues and leading all others in profits (see By the Numbers).
Let’s look at the long-term boom happening amidst all the short-term doom. Evaluate Pharma’s World
Preview indicates that Roche’s first-in-class treatment for bladder cancer, Tecentriq, could be one of the
best-selling drugs in the next few years; biotech advancements at Celgene and Shire (which recently acquired
Baxalta) are promising; R&D productivity gains have resulted in more treatments getting fast-tracked recently, with 56 products approved in 2015; the oncology sector is expected to roll up a CAGR of almost 13%
over the next several years; and there is no therapy area forecast to see a decline in sales.
The health industry is a healthy industry. It’s the one people depend on the most. We’ll know what these
times are like only in hindsight. In the meantime, let’s keep doing our best to serve our patients, and let the
numbers take care of themselves.
As always, we continue to look for the value of your contributions. Let us know if you have an idea for an
article—the people we write for are the people who write for us.
Neil Greenberg, Editor
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