Rethinking Pharmaceutical Business Models

Demographic trends, shifting patterns of disease, and strained public funding are placing new burdens on health-care systems. What is required are new business models that spread risks, take a broader view of health, and address the needs of the world’s poorest people.

ZURICH – The world’s health needs are changing dramatically. Demographic trends, shifting patterns of disease, and strained public funding are placing new burdens on health-care systems. For developed and developing countries alike, the new demands cannot be met if health care continues to operate in the same way. What is required are new business models that spread risks, take a broader view of health, and address the needs of the world’s poorest people.

Demographic changes will present significant challenges for countries’ long-term health planning. By 2050, the number of people worldwide who are 60 or older will exceed the number of children under 15. Moreover, an additional three billion people will join the global middle class over the next two decades, altering the types of health issues that countries will face, and the way health care is financed.

At the same time, non-communicable diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, are rising, while previously deadly conditions, such as HIV/AIDS, are now more treatable and have been deemed chronic diseases.

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