"COVID-19 Lockdown Exit Analysis" 30th Apr 2021
Just how much COVID-19 vaccine money is on the table? A whopping $175bn through to 2025, report says
- Drugmakers who seized the opportunity to develop vaccines against the coronavirus are on their way to reaping significant revenues. In its annual forecast for global drug spending, the IQVA Institute for Human Data Science puts the figure at $157 billion through to 2025.
- It is one of the many intriguing projections in this edition of the IQVA's annual drug spending forecast, the group's first since the coronavirus pandemic put the worldwide economy on tilt.
- For example, the IQVA projects global spending on medicines to reach $1.6 trillion by 2025, an increase from $1.25 trillion in 2019, representing annual growth of 3% to 6%. The $1.6 trillion figure does not include spending on coronavirus vaccines.
- 'We reflect what we expect to be happening over the next five years in terms of the drivers of change in demand for medicines and spending on medicines,' IQVIA executive director Murray Aitken explained in an interview.
- In regard to global COVID-19 vaccine spending, IQVA projects roughly $53 billion this year and $51 billion in 2022. The group sees a precipitous drop in total spending in 2023, to roughly $23 billion.
- The spending decrease over time can be attributed to a drop in price rather than demand, Aitken said. While IQVIA puts the average dose cost at $22 this year and $19 in 2022, Aitken sees prices falling to approximately $9 per dose by 2023, then to $7 by 2024 and all the way to $5 by 2025.
- 'We think the prices will keep coming down as we get beyond this immediate period of trying to get everyone vaccinated,' Aitken said. 'There are 11 vaccines in use in one part of the world or other and there may be more coming, so we can expect that prices will decline over time.'
- Other factors that will influence global vaccine spending include an increased availability of single-shot options, an increased supply to developing countries and the need for boost shots for those who have already been vaccinated.
- Another assumption in the model: IQVIA believes that by the end of this year, 40% of the world's population will be in countries that have achieved herd immunity. By the end of 2022, 70% of the world's population will be vaccinated.
- For the purpose of the estimate, the IQVIA also assumed there will be one-shot boosters on a two-year cycle in the 2023 to 2025 period, though this issue has yet to be resolved by vaccine producers.
- Making projections during a pandemic is a risky business, the IQVIA admits in its report. 'The impact of COVID-19 defied expectations throughout 2020 but the evolution from pandemic to endemic is reasonably certain, even if the interplay between vaccination levels and periodic outbreaks around the world remains challenging to predict,' the group said.
Just how much COVID-19 vaccine money is on the table? A whopping $157B through 2025, report says
Drugmakers who seized the opportunity to develop vaccines against the coronavirus are on their way to reaping significant revenues. Exactly how much money is on the table? In its annual forecast for global drug spending, the IQVIA Institute for Human Data Science put the figure at $157 billion through 2025. It’s one of the many intriguing projections in this edition of IQVIA's annual drug spending forecast, the group’s first since the coronavirus pandemic put the worldwide economy on tilt.
World to spend $157 billion on COVID-19 vaccines through 2025 -report
Total global spending on COVID-19 vaccines is projected to reach $157 billion by 2025, driven by mass vaccination programs underway and "booster shots" expected every two years, according to a report by U.S. health data company IQVIA Holdings. IQVIA said it expects the first wave of COVID-19 vaccinations to reach about 70% of the world's population by the end of 2022. Booster shots are likely to follow initial vaccinations every two years, the report said, based on current data on the duration of effect of the vaccines. The United States is preparing for the possibility that a booster shot will be needed between nine to 12 months after people receive their first full inoculations against COVID-19, a White House official said earlier this month.
EU Parliament: COVID-19 pass should guarantee free movement
European lawmakers said Thursday that COVID-19 certificates aimed at facilitating travel across the European Union should be enough to move freely this summer, a position likely to clash with member states’ prerogatives in their upcoming negotiations. EU legislators said Thursday in their negotiating position on the European Commission’s proposal that EU governments shouldn’t impose quarantines, tests or self-isolation measures on certificate holders. The EU’s executive arm proposed last month that the certificates would be delivered to EU residents who can prove they have been vaccinated, and also to those who tested negative for the virus or have proof they recovered from it.
Free rides and beer: Incentives are added to vaccine drive
Free beer, pot and doughnuts. Savings bonds. A chance to win an all-terrain vehicle. Places around the U.S. are offering incentives to try to energize the nation’s slowing vaccination drive and get Americans to roll up their sleeves. These relatively small, mostly corporate, promotion efforts have been accompanied by more serious and far-reaching attempts by officials in cities such as Chicago, which is sending specially equipped buses into neighborhoods to deliver vaccines. Detroit is offering $50 to people who give others a ride to vaccination sites, and starting Monday will send workers to knock on every door in the city to help residents sign up for shots. Public health officials say the efforts are crucial to reach people who haven’t been immunized yet, whether because they are hesitant or because they have had trouble making an appointment or getting to a vaccination site.
Demand for vaccine in Connecticut drops 50% over 2 weeks
Demand for COVID-19 vaccinations in Connecticut has decreased by about 50% over the past two weeks, prompting state officials to now focus heavily on reaching people — especially younger residents — with the state’s fleet of mobile vaccination vans and walk-up vaccinations at more than 100 existing clinics. Gov. Ned Lamont said plans are underway to bring the vans to large workplaces, fairs, parades and other large gatherings. “We’re doing everything we can to make the last of our folks, the 34% who aren’t vaccinated — I hope they get vaccinated — vaccinated soon,” the Democrat said during his regular COVID briefing with reporters. As of Thursday, more than 1.32 million residents have been fully vaccinated.
Japan business leaders suggest ways for govt to speed up vaccination rate
Japanese business leaders and a Nobel-prizewinning biologist called upon the government to reform its vaccination programme, including allowing drive-through inoculations, as the nation struggles to contain a resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic. Japan has secured the largest quantity of COVID-19 vaccines in Asia, as it gears up for the summer Olympics. But it has inoculated only 1.6% of its population so far, the slowest among wealthy countries. Government data on Wednesday showed that Japan has only used about a fifth of the coronavirus vaccine doses it has imported so far, underscoring logistical hurdles such as a shortage of medical staff
Policies to eliminate Covid instead of mitigating it through lockdowns were better for the economy and saved more lives, study claims
Experts argue deaths, economic impact and loss of freedom lower in elimination. They said damage of locking down hard and early would 'pay off in the long run.' Only five countries out of 37 of the world's most developed chose elimination. All of Europe except Iceland went for mitigation – controlling the virus
India sees new record COVID cases and deaths as crisis deepens
India’s total COVID-19 cases have passed 18 million after another world record number of daily infections, as gravediggers worked around the clock to bury victims and hundreds more were cremated in makeshift pyres in parks and parking lots. India reported 379,257 new infections and 3,645 new deaths on Thursday, health ministry data showed, the highest number of fatalities in a single day since the start of the pandemic. However, medical experts believe India’s true COVID-19 numbers may be five to 10 times greater than the official tally.
India’s COVID crisis: ‘I begged for help. My father still died’
On April 14, Ashish Shrivastav, 39, bundled his 70-year-old father who was complaining of breathlessness into his small nano car and took him to the Vivekanand hospital in Lucknow, capital of Uttar Pradesh state. At the hospital, his father, Sushil Kumar, tested positive for COVID-19 but, despite his age and vulnerability, the hospital told him he could not be admitted as there were no beds available. Ashish, who runs a private rehabilitation centre for children with disabilities, says he begged the doctors to admit his father but they told him to go to a government-run hospital instead. So Ashish put his father back in the car, bought two five-litre oxygen cylinders and began the search for a hospital that would admit him.
Indians turn to black market, unproven drugs as virus surges
Ashish Poddar kept an ice pack on hand as he waited outside a New Delhi hospital for a black market dealer to deliver two drugs for his father, who was gasping for breath inside with COVID-19. But the drugs never arrived, the ice that was intended to keep the medicines cool melted and his father died hours later. As India faces a devastating surge of new coronavirus infections overwhelming its health care system, people are taking desperate measures to try to keep loved ones alive. In some cases they are turning to unproven medical treatments, in others to the black market for life-saving medications that are in short supply. Poddar had been told by the private hospital treating his father, Raj Kumar Poddar, that remdesivir, an antiviral, and tocilizumab, a drug that blunts human immune responses, were needed to keep the 68-year-old man alive.
Alarm grows in Africa as it watches India’s COVID-19 crisis
Africa is “watching with total disbelief” as India struggles with a devastating resurgence in COVID-19 cases, the continent’s top public health official said Thursday, as African officials worry about delays in vaccine deliveries caused by India’s crisis. The African continent, with roughly the same population as India and fragile health systems, “must be very, very prepared” since a similar scenario could happen here, John Nkengasong, director of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told reporters. “What is happening in India cannot be ignored by our continent,” he said, and urged African countries to avoid mass gatherings including political rallies. “We do not have enough health care workers, we do not have enough oxygen,” he warned. Africa’s vaccine supply heavily relies on India, whose Serum Institute is the source of the AstraZeneca vaccines distributed by the global COVAX project to get doses to low- and middle-income countries. India’s export ban on vaccines “has severely impacted the predictability of the rollout of vaccination programs and will continue to do so for the coming weeks and perhaps months,” Nkengasong said.
Sold his SUV to buy oxygen for people: India’s good Samaritans
On Sunday, Maria Mehra, a 56-year-old COVID-19 patient, was gasping for breath at her home in Mumbai. Her oxygen level had dropped to 76 and she needed immediate hospitalisation. But there were no beds available, given the record number of infections across the metropolis over the past several weeks. Her desperate family tried frantically to arrange a hospital bed or an oxygen cylinder for her but couldn’t find one until Maria’s brother-in-law Jackson Quadras, 47, reached out to Shahnawaz Shahalam Sheikh. Sheikh provided them with an oxygen cylinder around midnight. Hours later, Quadras secured a hospital bed in Malad, a suburb in north Mumbai, for Maria but remains thankful to Sheikh whose timely intervention helped her. “Shahnawaz bhai (brother) is everything for us. He saved the life of my sister-in-law,” Jackson told Al Jazeera.
WHO sends COVID-19 aid as India nears 400,000 daily cases
India's COVID-19 surge continues unabated, with 386,829 new cases and 3,501 deaths, according to World O Meter. The daily case number is the highest any country has ever recorded, and it marks the ninth day in a row the country has reported more than 300,000. The crisis has galvanized organizations and government bodies into action: The World Health Organization (WHO) alone is sending 1.2 million reagents used for diagnostic testing, mobile field hospitals with up to 50 beds, 4,000 oxygen concentrators, and technical staff support, according to a news release yesterday. Also yesterday, the White House said in a statement that it will deliver $100 million worth of supplies, including oxygen cylinders and concentrators, large-scale oxygen generation units (with trained personnel) that can support up to 20 patients each, 15 million N95 respirators, rapid diagnostic tests, and up to 20,000 treatment courses of the antiviral drug remdesivir. The US government also confirmed it will send manufacturing supplies for the AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 vaccine. Because of the outbreak, the US State Department issued a level 4 travel advisory and told Americans not to travel to India or to leave as soon as safely possible, according to Bloomberg.
Why is India facing a deadly crunch of oxygen amid COVID surge?
A devastating surge in coronavirus infections has exposed India’s dilapidated health infrastructure and a chronic shortage of oxygen – a key treatment for seriously ill COVID-19 patients. Dire oxygen shortages as India battles a ferocious new wave means boom times for profit gougers, although some young volunteers are doing their best to help people on social media. Oxygen therapy is crucial for severe COVID-19 patients with hypoxaemia – when oxygen levels in the blood are too low. “Some clinical studies show that up to a quarter of hospitalised (COVID-19) patients require oxygen therapy and upwards to two-thirds of those in intensive care units,” community health specialist Rajib Dasgupta told the AFP news agency. “This is why it is imperative to fix oxygen-supply systems in hospital settings as this is a disease that affects lungs primarily.”
India Covid-19: Deadly second wave spreads from cities to small towns
India's deadly Covid-19 second wave has devastated big cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Lucknow and Pune. Hospitals and crematoriums have run out of space, and funerals are taking place in car parks. But the pandemic has now firmly gripped many smaller cities, towns and villages where the devastation is largely under-reported. Rajesh Soni spent eight hours taking his father from one hospital to another in a tuk-tuk in Kota district in the northern state of Rajasthan on Tuesday. He couldn't get an ambulance and the rickety vehicle was his only option. At 5pm, he decide to end his search for a hospital bed as his father's condition was deteriorating. He then "left everything to fate" and came home.
COVID-19: Why a domestic catastrophe for India could also become a global vaccine crisis
Of all the developing nations, India should have been able to summon a defence against COVID's second wave. Overcrowding, poverty and patchy public health systems across a vast and disparate country were all factors in the virus' favour, but India is also home to the world's biggest vaccine manufacturing capacity. The Serum Institute of India (SII) is at the centre of plans for Covax - a global coronavirus vaccine-sharing project seen as the key to ensuring billions of people beyond the economically secure West receive protection.
Brazil looks for vaccines as India’s crisis slows deliveries
Brazil is struggling to find vaccines to tackle one of the world’s worst Covid-19 outbreaks as resurgent outbreaks and supply shortages among top providers slow the pace of deliveries. Foreign Minister Carlos Franca told lawmakers Wednesday he’s seeking vaccines from a variety of partners, including 30 million doses from China’s Sinopharm, plus 8 million doses of the India-produced AstraZeneca shot as well as any U.S. surplus. The problem, he added, is the pandemic’s upsurge in India and tight supplies globally have left Brazil scrambling for doses.
US begins exporting Pfizer vaccine to Mexico: report
The U.S. will begin to send the Pfizer vaccine to Mexico as a Trump administration rule barring dose exports has expired, Reuters reported. A deal that Pfizer made with the Trump White House last year barred the company from sending doses of its vaccine to other countries since it was made in the U.S., but that deal expired on March 31, a U.S. official told Reuters. The source also added that Pfzier will begin to send shots aboard as it takes up extra capacity in U.S. facilities. The company has already shipped more than 10 million doses of its vaccine to Mexico, making it the country's largest supplier, according to Reuters.
UK orders 60m more doses of Pfizer Covid vaccine for booster jabs
The UK has ordered a further 60m doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccine in an effort to ensure that booster jabs can be given from this autumn, the government has announced. The health secretary, Matt Hancock, made the announcement at a Downing Street press conference on Wednesday and said the extra doses would be used alongside other approved vaccines in “protecting the progress that we have made”. Hancock said: “We have a clear route out of this crisis but this is no time for complacency, it’s a time for caution – so we can keep the virus under control while we take steps back to normal life.” England’s deputy chief medical officer, Jonathan Van-Tam, said that cases had dropped to very low levels, on a par with the situation in September.
Germany says new EU COVID vaccine contracts have clear rules on delivery shortfalls
The European Union’s contracts for COVID-19 vaccines to be delivered in 2022/23 contain clear rules what would happen if the vaccine makers do not deliver, Germany’s Health Minister Jens Spahn said on Thursday, signalling the bloc had learned its lesson after troubles with AstraZeneca. The European Commission has launched legal proceedings against the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker for not respecting its contract for the supply of COVID-19 vaccines, and for not having a "reliable" plan to ensure timely deliveries.
BioNTech expects vaccine trial results for babies by September
BioNTech expects results by September from trials testing the COVID vaccine it developed with Pfizer on babies as young as six months old, German magazine Spiegel cited the company’s CEO as saying. “In July, the first results could be available for the five-to-12-year-olds, in September for the younger children,” BioNTech Chief Executive Ugur Sahin told Spiegel. He added it takes about four to six weeks to evaluate the data. “If all goes well, as soon as the data is evaluated, we will be able to submit the application for approval of the vaccine for all children in the respective age group in different countries,” he said. BioNTech and Pfizer asked US regulators this month to approve the emergency use of their vaccine for adolescents aged 12 to 15. Sahin was quoted by Spiegel as saying the company was “in the final stages before submission” to European regulators for children aged 12 and older. A trial published at the end of March found the companies’ COVID-19 vaccine was safe, effective and produces robust antibody responses in adolescents.
BioNTech chief confident Covid jab will work on variant found in India
BioNTech’s chief executive has said he is confident the Covid-19 vaccine his company pioneered with Pfizer will work against a new variant circulating in India, where health officials are recording hundreds of thousands of new coronavirus cases a day. Ugur Sahin, who founded the German biotech with his wife Ozlem Tureci, said BioNTech had developed the vaccine with variants in mind. “[It] will hold, I’m confident of that,” he said, adding that BioNTech’s early experience developing cancer therapies meant that the company had been prepared for the virus to mutate. “We come out of cancer medicine and [there] the tumour is constantly changing and mutating . . . So we have experience with these escape mechanisms,” he said at an online meeting with reporters.
First coronavirus vaccine for children could be approved in June
The first coronavirus vaccine for children could be approved in June. A modified dose of the Pfizer vaccine for children over 12 has already been submitted for approval in the USA
Brazil tops 400,000 virus deaths amid fears of renewed surge
Brazil on Thursday became the second country to officially top 400,000 COVID-19 deaths, losing another 100,000 lives in just one month, as some health experts warn there may be gruesome days ahead when the Southern Hemisphere enters winter. April was Brazil’s deadliest month of the pandemic, with thousands of people losing their lives daily at crowded hospitals. The country’s Health Ministry registered more than 4,000 deaths on two days early in the month, and its seven-day average topped out at above 3,100. That figure has tilted downward in the last two weeks, to less than 2,400 deaths per day, though on Thursday the Health Ministry announced another 3,001 deaths, bringing Brazil’s total to 401,186. Local health experts have celebrated the recent decline of cases and deaths, plus the eased pressure on the Brazilian health care system — but only modestly. They are apprehensive of another wave of the disease, like those seen in some European nations, due to a premature resumption of activity in states and cities combined with slow vaccination rollout.
Russians Reject Vaccines as Kremlin Fears New Covid-19 Wave
Facing a rising wave of Covid-19 infections and a vaccination rate that isn’t keeping up, the Kremlin is trying to contain the epidemic without alarming Russians. Even insiders worry it won’t succeed. Unofficial government statistics show the third wave has begun, according to two officials with knowledge of the situation, who asked not to be identified in order to speak candidly. Months of upbeat assessments from the Kremlin that the situation is under control have depressed demand for vaccines, as much of the population no longer fears the virus, the officials said. “Of course, we expect demand for the vaccines will grow,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call Wednesday, adding that data shows there isn’t a third wave currently.
Cuba could be closing in on COVID vaccine sovereignty
With two domestically produced COVID-19 vaccines in stage-three clinical trials, Cuba is racing towards potentially becoming the first country in Latin America to develop its own shot against the coronavirus. The island of 11 million people, which has been under a strict US trade embargo for decades, is in process of developing five experimental shots, including Soberana 02 and Abdala, which reached final-stage trials last month. The names of the vaccines reveal much about how Cuba sees the national effort. Soberana translates as “sovereign”, while the Abdala shot was named after a patriotic poem by the Cuban revolutionary hero Jose Marti. Around 44,000 people will receive the Soberana 02 vaccine, and some 48,000 volunteers have been recruited for the Abdala trial. According to local reports, an additional 150,000 frontline workers will also receive the Soberana 02 shot.
Covid-19: One dose of vaccine cuts risk of passing on infection by as much as 50%, research shows
Adults infected with covid-19 three weeks after receiving one dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine were 38-49% less likely to pass the virus on to their household contacts than people who were unvaccinated, a preprint released by Public Health England has shown.The research looked at the proportion of household contacts who tested positive 2-14 days after vaccinated index cases, comparing this with households where the index case was unvaccinated. The team said that protection was seen from around 14 days after vaccination, and similar levels were observed regardless of the age of cases or contacts. Public Health England said that this protection was on top of the reduced risk of a vaccinated person developing symptomatic infection in the first place, which was around 60-65% four weeks after one dose of either vaccine. “This is very promising,” said Deborah Dunn-Walters, the British Society for Immunology’s covid-19 taskforce chair and professor of immunology at the University of Surrey. “While this study brings welcome news, we must not be complacent . . . It is still very important for us all to get two doses of the covid-19 vaccine to ensure we receive the optimal and longest lasting protection, both for ourselves and our communities.”
Egypt en route to coronavirus vaccine production
Officially, Egypt will locally produce China’s Sinovac and Russian Sputnik V vaccines and is planning to secure millions of doses annually as part of the state’s industry localization plan. Egypt already got over 1.5 million coronavirus vaccine doses and has contracted to get millions others from China and through the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access (COVAX). However, the preventive health officials in the country know that these vaccines, especially the Chinese, is likely a short-term vaccine, and therefore citizens may have to take the vaccine several times over the life course.
Moderna plans to produce up to 3bn COVID-19 vaccine doses in 2022
Moderna said it would produce as many as 3 billion doses of its Covid-19 vaccine next year as it makes new investments to bolster output at several factories in the US and Europe. The biotech company said it would increase supply by 50 per cent at its Norwood, Massachusetts, plant, which makes much of the vaccine substance used in shots for the US market. The investments would also enable partner Lonza Group, which is making supply for foreign markets, to double its output at a factory in Switzerland that makes vaccine substance. Vaccine output at third factory in Spain operated by another partner, Laboratorios Farmaceuticos Rovi, would also more than double under the plan. The increased production from the company-owned and partner factories is expected to ramp up in late 2021 and early 2022, Moderna said.
Brazil Says Russian Covid Vaccine Carried Live Cold Virus
Tainted batches of Russia's Sputnik V Covid vaccine sent to Brazil carried a live version of a common cold-causing virus, the South American country's health regulator reported in a presentation explaining its decision to ban the drug's import. Top virologist Angela Rasmussen told AFP the finding "raises questions about the integrity of the manufacturing processes" and could be a safety issue for people with weaker immune systems, if the problem was found to be widespread.