James Mullen, CEO, Biogen Idec Inc. and Henri Termeer, CEO, Genzyme Corp expressed opposing views as to the predicted effects of the Healthcare Reform bill on the biotech sector at MassBio a few days ago.
Mr. Mullen stated that the healthcare bill did not address underlying causes relating to utilization. He warned the US system will begn to look a lot more like Europe with price and other govermental controls on service. "The environment to launch new products...is going to be tougher, the pricing is going to be tougher, the probability (of drug approvals) is probably going to be more challenging."
Mr. Termeer chose to highlight the advantages he sees with the 12-year data exclusivity provision that was included in the bill, as well as the therapeutic research tax credit for biotech start-ups. Mr. Termeer indicated that the Obama administration "is actually interested in innovation".
On balance, I am more in the Termeer camp. I think most observers of the bill feel that pharma and biotech made out well. The provisions in the bill referenced above by Mr. Termeer can be expected to increase investment in this sector. See Boston.com for more.
Posted by Bruce Lehr April 2, 2010