Evercore ISI assembled a dozen internal specialists for a webinar to talk about COVID-19 from a variety of perspectives, with opinions aplenty on transmission route, up-and-coming treatment prospects, and problems in how testing procedures are understood – or not.
LONDON – COVID-19 is posing a real threat to the viability of medical charities in the U.K., which collectively fund 17,000 scientists and invest more than £1.3 billion (US$1.6 billion) per annum in research.
With nearly a quarter of the activity announced in March focused on COVID-19, the first quarter of 2020 appears to be on target to beat the deal and M&A values of two of the last three years, although it remains behind 2019. Despite the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, let alone the upcoming U.S. presidential election, the industry has fared relatively well in terms of dealmaking so far this year, even as the markets have plummeted and partnering events have moved to a virtual format. In fact, deals should logically increase as the pandemic takes its toll on the economy, according to a biopharma executive who responded to a recent J.P. Morgan survey.
Many adaptations to the coronavirus pandemic will remain standard features of health care long after the pandemic wanes, according to Brian Chapman, managing partner at ZS Associates, an Evanston, Ill.-based pharmaceutical and medical technology consultancy. In the long term, telehealth will be a clear winner as payers look to lower ongoing costs, more procedures and care will move out of hospitals, rapid diagnostics will gain importance, and government and payer coverage of infectious disease testing of all kinds will expand, he predicted.
The emergence of the new variety of coronavirus has had a massive effect on medical care across the globe, which has boosted telehealth coverage while suppressing non-emergency procedures. Several medical societies have published guidelines for procedures during the COVID-19 outbreak, however, which in the aggregate suggest that many procedures will be significantly delayed.
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