Out of the shadows: Mental health in the Asia Pacific region
In the first of a series of articles exploring mental health in emerging markets we take an in-depth look at the situation in Asia
Mental health has been a peripheral issue in emerging markets for a long time, despite the severe impact it can have, not only on those directly affected but also on families, carers, social cohesion, and economic development. Fortunately, mental health is starting to get more attention, but there is still a widespread tendency to stigmatise and discriminate against people suffering with a mental illness. They are often considered as dangerous and aggressive which in turn increases the social distance.
Is there an opportunity for pharma to do more? In the first of a series of articles exploring mental health in emerging markets we take an in-depth look at the situation in Asia where problems arising from ill mental health are the second largest contributor to years lost to disability (YL:D).
New opportunities in emerging markets
Published in Pharma Exec January 2018 by Rachel Howard
The next billion patientsUntil recently, multinational pharmaceutical and life sciences companies have focused their clinical research efforts/clinical development programs almost exclusively on mature markets: North America, Europe and Japan in particular. However, rapid changes are underway in emerging markets. Firstly, we are seeing an expanding middle class. Virtually every emerging market, from Indonesia to Mexico and from China to Brazil, is witnessing an increase in the proportion of patients who now qualify as middle class, and wealth is increasing commensurately, enabling more individuals to afford essential care or purchase private health insurance. This growth is set to continue. In parallel, we are seeing an increased focus among emerging market governments on public healthcare reform: expanding their populations’ access to medicines by establishing universal healthcare coverage (such as JKN in Indonesia and Seguro Popular in Mexico) and deepening access by expanding formularies to include more drugs (despite these often being set in the context of aggressive cost containment measures). Greater purchasing power and improved market access are growing the opportunity for innovative medicines in these markets. The vast populations of many emerging markets mean they constitute a high proportion of the world’s "next billion patients", which pharma simply cannot afford to…
Medical Marijuana: A Challenge to Traditional Pain Relief?
Published in Pharmaceutical Executive November 2017
Medical use of marijuana for a broad range of conditions is expanding rapidly in the US, as legalization gathers pace and investors flock to a booming market. A January 2017 report for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) found substantial or conclusive evidence of marijuana’s therapeutic benefit in chronic pain, multiple sclerosis and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Other, more tentative US state-approved indications include diabetes, glaucoma, epilepsy, migraine, post-traumatic stress disorder, hepatitis C, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and Tourette syndrome.
Living with NASH: An Unexpected Diagnosis
Published in eyeforpharma November 2017 by Mariel Metcalfe
With no current licensed treatments and more than 20 compounds in phase II and III, the liver disease non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) represents a huge opportunity for pharma companies – if they understand patient needs. As our waistlines thicken and our activity levels decrease, another chronic illness threatens to disturb our comfortable lifestyles. And, because it’s relatively unknown, diagnosis comes as a shock to patients, who usually associate liver disease with heavy consumption of alcohol.
Innovation, sustainability and prosperity: Japan’s healthcare vision for the future
By Callum McCulloch and Marc Yates
In 2015, the Japanese government appointed an advisory panel of young experts to lay out its vision of healthcare in the country for 2035. This vision is a healthcare system that delivers unrivalled health outcomes, provides secure and responsive care for all in society, is sustainable, and contributes to prosperity in the nation and around the world.
Yet, how achievable is this ideal, and how does the government plan to realize its vision? What is clear is that it will require a paradigm shift – a move from quantity to quality of care and from inputs to value, on care rather than cure, on autonomy over regulation, on national integration rather than fragmentation.