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Pharmaceutical Market Europe - May 2020

PME April 2020

Pulling together in times of crisis

As lockdown continues into its eighth week, news that the strict measures are working and the curve is flattening is welcome indeed. But as spring turns to summer, more and more people long to be outside to enjoy the warm weather and the sunshine. Those of us who work in the world of healthcare understand that now is not the time to relax and attempt to go back to how things were, but it is understandable that many people, especially the young, don’t see the need to keep putting their lives on hold. But with the distressing news that the UK has the highest death toll in Europe, even surpassing Italy, which was the first and, at the time, hardest hit of the European countries, it is clear that the situation remains critical and that we all need to hold out for just a bit longer.

As we all continue to do our bit in the fight against COVID-19, the race to find a vaccine continues. As we go to press, according to the World Health Organization’s coronavirus vaccine update of 5 May, there are eight COVID-19 vaccines in clinical testing and another 100 in preclinical development, which is hugely encouraging. Read our R&D article on page 18 to learn more about how biopharma is working to bring an end to the pandemic.

We also have our annual special feature on excellence in communications. As this crisis has made clear, now more than ever, it is vital for everyone to think before they share, especially via social media. Fake news, in particular related to the pandemic, can only cause confusion and in some cases can be dangerous as people offer treatments for COVID-19 that are at best useless and at worst can cause serious harm.

As the government continues to work hard to find ways to ease the lockdown and get the economy going again, let’s hope that we can eventually emerge from this crisis with a stronger NHS and a powerful reminder of what we can achieve as a nation when we come together in times of crisis.

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