Press review

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Pharma companies offer well-paid jobs, some of the best places to work in Spain

MADRID, 26 Apr (APM) - Pharmaceutical companies are among the best places to work in Spain, with positions for highly-qualified personnel and good salaries, financial El Economista reported on Tuesday.
A report by the Weber Research Institute of Health Economics, supported by Spanish branded pharma lobby Farmaindustria, suggests that pharma is one of the leading industries in terms of economic transformation. It contributes to the country’s economy with the latest technology, science and high-quality employment, El Economista said.
The report ‘The value of medicines from a social perspective’ says that pharma has generated a total of 40,500 direct jobs in Spain. Of these, 62% require a university degree and 94% of them are stable positions, the financial reported.
El Economista also quoted results from a report by Willis Towers Watson consulting showing that salaries in pharmaceutical companies are 10% higher than the average of other industries operating in Spain.
The benefits of pharma are "even greater" considering indirect jobs, which are as many as 200,000 in Spain. In Europe, pharma’s workforce consists of approximately 800,000 people, El Economista noted.
Spain is the fifth European country by jobs linked to pharma, after Germany, France, Italy and Switzerland.
In the U.S. there are 854,000 people working directly for pharmaceutical companies. Globally, pharma employed 5.1 million people in 2014, according to the latest available data, which show a 42% increase from eight years before, the financial added.
There are almost 350 manufacturers of pharmaceutical products operating in Spain, with sales above €15 billion. This accounts for 24% of high-tech production in the country.

France’s ANSM warning on ibuprofen

France’s drugs regulator ANSM has issued a warning on ibuprofen, recommending minimal doses, a three-day limit on treatment course in cases of fever and a five-day course to control pain, dailies La Razón, ABC, El País, La Vanguardia and El Periódico reported on Saturday.
According to ANSM, ibuprofen and ketoprofen can worsen infections. The regulator has asked for a European study on the safety of both drugs, La Razón reported.
In cases of pain or fever, paracetamol should be preferred to ibuprofen according to the French regulator. The warning is particularly important when treating rhinopharyngitis, ear infections, cough, lung infection, skin lesions and chickenpox, El País noted.

U.S. distribution firm facing charges in opioid crisis

U.S. distributor Rochester Drug Co-Operative and former CEO Laurence Doud are facing charges of fraud and narcotics trafficking in the U.S., daily ABC reported on Wednesday.
Prosecutors accuse the company and its executive of supplying drugstores with "tens of millions of pills" including doses of oxycodone and fentanyl used for illegal purposes. This made the opioid crisis worse, ABC reported.
Doud and other executives instructed employees to ignore opioid policies implemented by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and kept on providing the drugs to clients in spite of knowing that they were selling them illegally, prosecutors have argued. The DEA has been investigating the company for years, the daily added.
Doud has been arrested and will remain in custody until he pleads in court.

Baby on Novartis’ gene therapy dies

A baby included in a clinical trial of Novartis’ gene therapy Zolgensma for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) type 1 has died, daily El Mundo and financial Cinco Días reported on Wednesday. (APMHE 62741)
The company has started an investigation to find out whether the death is related to the treatment.
Novartis planned to launch Zolgensma (onasemnogene abeparvovec) in the U.S. and Europe in 2019. The drug, "in which many families had high hopes", could be approved later than expected, El Mundo reported.
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is linked to a high risk of death during the first two years of life, El País said.
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