Global demographic trends threaten drug industry

You can file the following under the category of really, really bleak forecasts:

The rising cost of healthcare in the developing world matched by an aging population is creating a perfect storm for drug developers that threaten their entire industry, according to an upcoming report by AT Kearney. We are moving from a world in which six or seven workers support one person in retirement to a ration of three to one, warns the report, and that will force healthcare services all over the world to restrict their support to essential services. Expensive biologics aimed at extending the lives of patients won't be included. There will also be much greater pressure on developers to match a recent agreement Johnson & Johnson made with the National Health Service in the UK to reimburse the NHS for each patient who doesn't respond to Velcade. And as developing countries grow their populations will demand new therapies that target diseases like malaria, tuberculosis and HIV.

- read the story from Dow Jones

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