Pills Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Surmonter les obstacles du marché aux nouveaux antibiotiques

LONDRES – Du point de vue strict de certains investisseurs, une gestion financière ingénieuse par une entreprise pour renforcer les prix de ses actions est une bonne chose. Selon cette logique étroite, quand il s'agit de l'industrie pharmaceutique, nous ne devrions pas nous inquiéter de l'augmentation du prix des actions des entreprises pharmaceutiques non pas causée par de nouvelles découvertes, mais due à certaines manœuvres financières, comme par exemple les rachats d'actions ou l'inversion fiscale.

Mais le secteur pharmaceutique n'est pas un secteur d'activité comme les autres. Il est intrinsèquement lié à l'intérêt public, qui a historiquement fourni l'innovation médicale essentielle à la capacité de la société à lutter contre les maladies. En outre, alors que les patients sont les consommateurs, les acheteurs réels sont souvent les gouvernements. Même aux États-Unis, les acheteurs publics représentent au moins 40% du marché des médicaments délivrés sur ordonnance.

Les gouvernements financent également une grande partie de la recherche qui rend possible la création de bénéfices par ce secteur d'activité. Le gouvernement américain est le plus grand bailleur de fonds du monde de la Recherche et Développement dans le domaine médical. Au niveau mondial, les contribuables financent un tiers des dépenses de recherche dans le domaine de la santé. Il ne faut donc pas s'étonner si les décideurs insistent pour que les efforts de ce secteur en matière d'innovation soient mis en œuvre dans les domaines qui offrent le plus d'avantages aux contribuables et aux patients, plutôt que dans de ceux qui, à l'instar des manœuvres financières, qui pourraient être plus rentables à court terme pour ce secteur.

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