The year 2020 is marked by the advent of one of the major health crises that the world has seen. The COVID-19 virus that spread and took roots in our society showed the world the deeply entrenched problems that the healthcare and pharma industry has been facing. The crises made the global political and private leaders and the industrialists rethink the functioning of the world’s healthcare systems and the whole industry.
The pharma industry today is faced with several challenges. The current pharma trends towards these challenges will become the forces that will shape the whole industry in the upcoming years. Thus, it becomes extremely important for the people associated with the industry to know and understand these trends to a certain depth so as not to fall behind in this rapidly changing environment.
Here are the top 5 pharmaceutical industry trends of 2021:
Trend #1 Popularization of Technology; beyond medicines
People have begun to increasingly engage with their physical well-being. They have begun to take themselves and their health more seriously as compared to the “it will go away in a few days” attitude. This change has increased their engagement with health and pharmaceutical technology and as a result, the technology in healthcare is rapidly evolving.
The ever-increasing investment in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in healthcare points towards the fact that people are actively using these devices and applications. Tools like watches and other wearables help the user in keeping track of their bodily symptoms, such as – oxygen levels, heart rate, calories, etc.
The popularization of such a technology will shape the pharma industry into marketing these goods and not just selling medicines. The health solutions will go beyond just medicines.
Trend #2 Remote Functioning: Location Independence
The pharma industry in the last year has moved all its functioning to the virtual world. There is location independence in conducting meetings related to medicine and health. The meetings of the sales reps and medical professionals are being joined by more people to discuss the changing medicines and science.
Even the patients have begun to consult their pharma partners through the online mode and the pharma industry is constantly working to make patients more comfortable while working virtually. The pharma industry in the year 2021 is trying to make its processes and information more and more transparent. Transparency helps in building better relationships with patients.
Trend #3 Rise of Telemedicine
Traditionally, patients have been going directly to pharma shops to get the medicines they require. Although after being struck by the lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the patients or others do not have the option to step out and have such easy access to the pharmaceutical shops.
These restrictions in the personal movement have given rise to telemedicine. The pharmaceutical trend of Telemedicine has brought pharmacies to the patient. A report by BCG said that almost 70% of prescribers readily engage with healthcare companies to deal through online methods. This makes it easier for pharma providers to provide medicines to patients at home.
Trend #4 Increased transparency in working procedures
With the rise of the pandemic, there has been a rise in distrust amongst people for various reasons. Ranging from general lack of scientific knowledge to personal trauma caused by witnessing the loss of life to the virus. Such situations hamper the patients from trusting medicines or in recent cases, the Vaccine.
Thus, it is important that the pharma industry makes the process of developing and supplying vaccines more transparent. The more people will have information about the development of vaccines, their after-effects, drawbacks, etc. the more people will be comfortable in getting vaccinated.
Trend #5 Use of APIs for increased interoperability
After discussing health technology, another specific trend at rising is the use of APIs in healthcare. An API is an Application Programming Interface, it acts as a link between different apps to exchange information back and forth.
It is important to inculcate APIs in Healthcare systems as it streamlines the process of exchange of information and makes it easier for different healthcare providers (including the pharma industry) to provide the patients with appropriate required material more efficiently.
The technological rise and holistic health approaches in pharma trends are going to have a heavy impact on the pharma industry in the upcoming years. The market of the industry is not going to die anytime soon but it is surely going to undergo massive changes and if any brand fails to adapt would be bound to lose their market in the future.
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