The pharmaceutical industry can hardly be categorized as a slow-moving industry. Instead, the high-paced nature of the drug industry is renown throughout the world. The trends that comprise the market are ever-changing.
In order for any pharmaceutical company to stay on top of its game, it has to learn to adapt. Students are heading to college to study pharmaceutical development and biomedical engineering in droves. Thus, this infuse of talent sparks remarkable growth and development in the industry.
In this article, we’ll take a look at what future pharma will look like. We’ll investigate eight special trends. These trends will shape what the industry will look like this coming year in 2020.
1. Brand Name to Generic
First and foremost, we’re seeing a push towards generic drugs as customers move away from brand name purchases. This is a trend that has actually started in many other markets that is now effecting pharma as well.
Look at it this way. Customers are beginning to realize that for most products, whether it’s a brand name product or a generic one, it’s made in the same factory in a third world country. So why pay more for the brand name product? Why pay for the marketing fees that these companies pay to advertise their product to you?
There’s simply no reason these days to go with brand name drugs over generic. Thus, in order to save money, many customers are now switching to purchasing the generic versions of non-prescription drugs.
2. Increased Prescription Prices
Prescription prices will stay on the rise. This is likely a direct result of how the health insurance industry works in the United States. Pharma companies have no problem in charging exorbitant prices that they know that health insurance companies will pay.
The insurance companies then pass on those price markups to you in the form of increases to your premium. The result is that the customer is shot in the foot with higher prices.
However, consider all of the technology that is changing the industry. Much innovation is happening in the pharma industry, and it takes serious money to support that innovation. Thus, it’s more reasonable that prescription prices are increasing.
3. Organic Products Are Supreme
Organic products reign supreme in 2020. These days, organic meats and fruits and vegetables are all the craze. No one wants anything that has ever had any GMO’s or hormones in it or that which is unduly processed.
There is a push for pharmaceutical companies to move towards more natural forms of production of organic drugs.
Another major trend that the pharmaceutical industry is beginning to see is individualization. Gone are the days when doctors prescribed a one-size-fits-all medication routine.
Nowadays, medical professionals are more conscious of the wide variety of drugs available on the market. Thus, it is easier to get a more perfect fit for a certain individual’s medical treatment. The natural consequence of this is that more drugs have to be produced and purchased. However, the gains in terms of better drug/patient fit are well worth it.
5. Digital Prescription Fulfillment
This is one of the most hotly anticipated trends of future pharma. Just think of a world where one can fulfill one’s prescription digitally. Chances are that if you’re sick and you need a prescription, you don’t really want to leave the comfort of your home. The last thing that you want to do is make the trek out to a pharmacy to pick up your prescription drugs. However, you have to present your prescription in person in order to get the drugs that you need to get well.
It’s a bit of a chicken and egg problem, and this trend is making a solution seem visible on the horizon.
With digital prescription fulfillment, one can simply upload their prescription for verification to a website online. Once verified, the person can pay for drugs and have them shipped directly to his or her front door. The benefits of this are obvious. Supreme convenience will abound.
There’s no doubt that this trend will catch on quickly. So if you’re in the stock market, consider investing in any company that will be doing digital prescription fulfillment!
6. Digestible Sensors
Imagine if you could see in real-time how a drug is breaking down in and affecting your system. This is what the future looks like with digestible sensors. If pharma companies figure out the final pieces of the puzzle in order to make this work, this will reveal tons of valuable data to medical professionals.
Having a better idea of how drugs break down in your system will enable your doctor to know whether or not he or she diagnosed your illness correctly. If the medication isn’t working, then this is exactly where that will be revealed to you as well.
7. Virtual Testing
Pharmaceutical consulting firms are now recommending the use of virtual testing of drugs. This has massive implications for the industry. Instead of requiring animals for trials, the pharma companies can simply use digital software to model the same trial.
This means that trials can be conducted much, much faster than before. This will shorten the amount of time between development and when the drug is brought to market. This will speed up pharmaceutical innovation and spur even more pharma development.
8. 3D Printed Manufacture
This may still be a few years away, but it’s exciting to think about! 3D printing has been a major step for technology in the past few years. It’s being put to good use in a variety of applications, but it hasn’t yet broken through into pharmaceutical manufacture.
For those more complex drugs with lower volume manufacture, 3D printing could greatly decrease costs and increase production rates.
Future Pharma Is Exciting!
There is no doubt that future pharma is exciting! With these eight trends to look forward to, we can’t wait to see how drug development will become more streamlined and efficient.
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