Spain has become the second country in the world where more clinical trials are carried out, only surpassed by the United States, the hegemonic power in clinical research in the world. Ahead of countries “like Germany or China” with many more resources, as stressed by the new president of Farmaindustria, Martin Sellés.
Currently, and through the BEST R + D pharmaceutical program, 3,076 clinical trials involving more than 130,000 patients are being developed. A project involving 45 laboratories, 60 hospitals, thirteen autonomous communities and four independent clinical research groups.
“It is a great prestige for researchers and a hope for patients,” said Sellés, who highlighted the “global level” of many basic research laboratories that are installed in Spain. An annual radiography of a sector that produces close to 15,200 million euros (24% of all Spanish high technology) and exports more than 10,600 million. About 5% of this amount, about 530 million, is destined for the United Kingdom, which is at risk.
A country that negotiates its departure from the European Union, although at the moment it is not known what the divorce will be like, if in a calm manner, following the wake of the Exit Agreement approved by the EU and the Government of Theresa May, or more abrupt form. The general director of Farmaindustria, Humberto Arnés, has assured that the sector is prepared for the worst scenario of separation, although he hopes that «there are no problems of supply for the citizens of the United Kingdom and the European Union». “Another thing is that companies have problems in the day to day, although they are already preparing for this situation,” he said. “In addition, Switzerland and Norway are not within the European Union and collaboration is permanent,” he added when questioned about the future of relations.
Pharmaceutical companies in Spain invested in industrial R + D 1,147 million in 2017, which means that this sector accounts for one in five euros spent on research and 5.7% more than in the previous year. In addition, almost half of this investment (47.2%, about 542 million) was carried out in collaboration with research centers and public and private hospitals. The rest of the expense was in the own laboratories (605 million). An R & D, as highlighted by Sellés, which employs 4,713 people; Around 40,500 people work in the sector as a whole, of which 52% are women and 92% have an indefinite contract.
Regarding the challenges of the future, the president of Farmaindustria has indicated the need to bring more investment “if certain conditions are met”. “We can not do it alone and we need the collaboration and coordination of all agents of the National Health System,” said Sellés, who recalled that gene therapy as CAR-T. “We will be able to train and train our immune system so that it can eliminate the cancer cells. We are going to talk more about therapies than medicines. It’s disruptive innovation, “Sellés explained. «Innovation is always the solution. The problem would be not to have it, “said the president of Farmaindustria.
Spain has become the second country in the world where more clinical trials are carried out.