MADRID, 17 July (APM) - The Covid-19 crisis poses an opportunity to remodel pharma, a crucial industry for public health and Spain's economy, which claims its position as a cornerstone of the country's financial recovery, financial newspaper El Economista reported on Thursday.
The newspaper said: "Data speak for themselves. Pharma accounts for 19% of R&D investment in Spain, exports surpassed €12 billion last year and drugs produced in Spain reached more than €15 billion in value. This picture shows the importance of this kind of industry for economic reactivation."
The story was based on a meeting organised by the financial with representatives of branded pharma lobby group Farmaindustria.
At the meeting, Humberto Arnés, Farmaindustria's director general, said that even though pharma is mainly thought of as a healthcare industry, its members also feel they are a significant sector of the economy. "We are a model of the kind of productive network that a country like Spain needs," he said.
Pharma is a leading sector in terms of research. It accounts for one out of each five euros invested in R&D in the country. It generates high quality employment and generates a value that ranges from €2 to €8 per each euro invested in innovative medicines, the financial noted.
Arnés said that any country would want pharma solidly established in it. Álvaro Hidalgo, president of the Weber foundation, also a speaker, argued that pharma is a leading industry in terms of employment, capital and technology, which are the pillars of economic development in the long term.
Experts point out challenges for HTA implementation in Spain
Carlos Camps, head of experts' group Oncovalor (Oncovalue) has said that it is urgent to face the challenges of HTA in Spain, including a shared definition of clinical benefits in cancer patients, medical journal Gaceta Médica reported on Tuesday.
Speaking at a recent meeting with other cancer experts, he said that certain concepts need to be clearly defined, including innovation itself. With different variables in each clinical scenario, multi-criteria analysis will be key to draw a more complete picture of the value each new therapy offers, he suggested.
Bartomeu Massuti, head of oncology at Alicante General Hospital, said that a debate must be had to address how developers of new cancer drugs can contribute to this. Massuti said that if developers were allowed to participate in pricing and reimbursement decisions based on the clinical benefit they observe for a given drug, a more efficient decision on whether or not to continue working on it could be made, the journal said.
Spain's Rovi making the best of alliance with Moderna
Since its collaboration outside the U.S. in the fill-finish manufacturing of Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine candidate was announced, Rovi's shares have continued to rise, financial newspapers El Economista, Expansión and Cinco Días reported on Thursday.
Following reports that Moderna's experimental mRNA Covid-19 vaccine offered successful results in a Phase I study (APMHE 68176
), Rovi's shares rose 9%, Cinco Días reported.
Analysts estimates have been surpassed by the firm's performance, El Economista reported.
Russia accused of trying to steal data on Covid-19 vaccine
A joint statement by the UK, U.S. and Canada accuses hackers linked to Russian intelligence services of trying to steal information about Covid-19 vaccine from research centres, daily newspapers El Mundo and El País report on Friday.
El Mundo quotes UK foreign secretary Dominic Raab as saying that Russia is targeting researchers who are working to fight the pandemic, calling this "completely unacceptable". According to a statement from Raab, while the UK and its allies are working hard to find a vaccine and protecting global health, "others pursue their selfish interest with reckless behaviour", the newspaper reports.
Targets include the University of Oxford and the Imperial College London, El Mundo says.
El País reports that earlier on Thursday Raab had said he was "almost certain" that Russia had attempt to interfere in the UK's 2019 general election. Dimitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, rejected the allegations, El País adds.
Russia has threatened to respond to "hostile sanctions" from the UK, the newspaper notes.
Gilead claims latest data on remdesivir show improvement in recovery
Financial newspaper Cinco Días on Saturday reported that, according to Gilead, new data of patients with advanced Covid-19 show significant improvement in recovery with remdesivir.
In a new study, 74.4% of patients treated with remdesivir recovered on day 14 compared to 59% of patients who received standard therapy. These data have not been yet confirmed in a clinical trial, the financial said.
Belén Garijo promoted to Merck KGaA's deputy CEO
Merck KGaA's head of pharma Belén Garijo has been promoted to deputy chief executive (CEO), daily newspaper ABC, El Español, financial newspapers Cinco Días, Europa Press agency and medical journal Diario Médico reported on Thursday. (APMHE 68155