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青山妩媚

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Medical Tourism/医疗旅行,Medical Home/医疗之家  

2009-06-30 17:43:02|  分类: Bio-Pharma |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Global medical tourism market to hit $100B by 2012

We all knew medical tourism was growing, but over the next few years, volume should explode say researchers speaking at a conference in Singapore. According to one researcher, the global medical tourism market should climb to a staggering $100 billion by 2012. (This figure is in direct contradiction to a study done last year by McKinsey & Co., which contended that the demand for medical tourism had been understated by those in the business.)

The Asian medical tourism market, in particular, should be bolstered by rising quality standards and the growing demand for quality treatment, according to Andrew Keable, divisional director at Informa Life Sciences. After all, patients who undergo treatments in Asia often pay only 10 percent of the cost of similar treatment in the U.S. or United Kingdom, Keable notes.

What's more, countries like Korea, Malaysia, Thailand and India have implemented state-of-the-art medical technologies that should improve care. Combine that with the increasing sophistication of the travel industry, and medical tourism growth has excellent fuel, he says.

Report: Five medical home recommendations for states

The "medical home" concept is all the rage these days, as many health leaders believe that it can cut costs and improve patient management. The question, however, is what model works best, as the idea is still in its infancy. Ever so slowly, health plans, research organizations and physician groups are weighing in.

This week, a state policy group has outlined five strategies states should consider when rolling out medical home programs. The National Academy for State Health Policy is suggesting that states should form partnerships with key players; create a clear definition of what a "medical home" is; align reimbursement with program goals; support physician practices; and measure results.

These recommendations are coming from 10 states with advanced medical home programs already in place, including Colorado, Idaho, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, Oregon, Washington state, North Carolina and Rhode Island. It's not clear how these recommendations will help individual health plans or employer initiatives, but they're at least a start.

FierceBiotech's 2009 Fierce 15

At the beginning of this year, I was just a little nervous about how the Fierce 15 would come together for 2009. The biotech industry was headed into the Valley of Death, after all, not a pleasant-sounding place to go looking for up-and-coming companies boldly pursuing their destinies.

In truth, this year turned out to be remarkably easy to find star players. The weak developers are in survival mode, unable to attract new money and playing for time. With venture backers more selective, the cream was more readily visible at the top. And this year's Fierce 15 help prove that if you have vision, good science and solid management, the money is still there to execute growth strategies. 

This is our seventh annual Fierce 15 and the format is much the same as in previous years. I have added one new feature: A list of venture companies backing these emerging drug developers. VC money continues to be the primary source of sustenance for new ideas in biotechnology and I wanted to make sure that their role was better recognized.

Most of these companies are following a familiar path. Often starting with a university lab project, many are out to prove that they can fight disease with a new product that works a lot better than what patients have to rely on today. But there are some exceptions as well, pursuing some groundbreaking technologies. Either way, they typically face years of tests and trials, a complex and expensive regulatory review process and an incredibly risky business model. But of course a big appetite for risk helps to qualify for the Fierce 15.

All of these companies are still private. In previous years I always had to fret if one of my favorites for the Fierce 15 would go public before I could complete the project. But there was no chance of that this year. With the economy going through a topsy-turvy phase, the IPO window has been nailed shut--for now. Most of the CEOs on this year's list are already looking past the market turmoil to a period when IPOs resurface as a plausible exit strategy for venture groups. In the meantime, deal-making and M&A have heated up, offering other ways to gain a payback.

I would like to thank the readers of FierceBiotech who suggested nominees for this year's list. This year more than any other you offered up a slate of candidates for the Fierce 15 that included some real winners. And keep the e-mails coming. Once one year's list is finished, I start compiling a list of possibilities for the coming review. On to 2010! - John Carroll


Roche: Goodbye PhRMA and ABPI, hello BIO

Roche no longer wants to associate with the rest of Big Pharma. The Swiss company is pulling out of the U.S. pharmaceuticals association, PhRMA, and is resigning from PhRMA's opposite number in the U.K., the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry. Roche also plans to drop its sponsorship of a pharma management program at Rutgers Business School.

Instead, Roche wants to hang out with the biotech crowd. Now that Roche has wrapped up its acquisition of one of the big Kahunas of biotech, Genentech, the company is putting its money into BIO, the Biotech Industry Organization. "Genentech and Roche believe BIO's purpose is closely aligned with the direction of the new company and, therefore, can represent the company's interest in Washington," a spokeswoman told the Star-Ledger.

Not for lack of trying on PhRMA's part, however. The group dispatched its chairman, AstraZeneca chief David Brennan, to lobby Roche CEO Severin Schwan to stick with the group. No such luck. And in losing Roche, PhRMA not only loses a big chunk of revenue--dues were based on company sales--but a big chunk of clout as well, CEO Billy Tauzin told the Star-Ledger. "They are hugely important," he said.

Roche's resignation from ABPI is a bit more complex; the association had suspended the company for breaching its code of practice on the marketing of weight-loss drug Xenical and patient incentives for users of a cystic fibrosis remedy. Though reinstated several months ago, the company told the Financial Times that it has opted out of ABPI but that it will continue to abide by the group's code of practice. "[O]ur time away from the ABPI has enabled us to reflect upon the nature of this relationship and consideration of mutual needs for the future," the company said in a statement. "We have concluded that this is something we need to review further and for that reason, we have decided not to re-join the ABPI for the time being."

The ABPI isn't taking this lying down: The Financial Times reports that the organization is disputing Roche's right to leave. "The ABPI doesn't want to see any member company walk away," said ABPI President Chris Brinsmead (who also happens to be AstraZeneca's U.K. chief). "A unified front makes sense." Can the British pharma industry self-regulate if one of the biggest companies isn't part of the association? That's the FT's question. And will others follow Roche out?



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