PMPN_Pharmaceutical & Medical Packaging News

Pharmaceutical & Medical Packaging News, September/October 2015

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Editorial • Pharmaceutical & Medical Packaging News September/October 2015 8 ® PMP News is on Follow Daphne username: @daphneallen Brand Director–Packaging Steve Everly 610/705-8705 E-mail: Co-Executive Editor Daphne Allen 310/445-4263 • Fax: 310/445-4269 E-mail: Co-Executive Editor Lisa McTigue Pierce 630/481-1422 E-mail: Technical Editor Rick Lingle 630/481-1426 E-mail: Associate Editor Matthew Sanderson 310/445-4278 E-mail: Account Director Doris Luftglass 310/740-9073 E-mail: Reprints Wright's Media 877/652-5295 List Rentals Statlistics • 203/778-8700 Postal lists Jennifer Felling, E-lists Turk Hassan, Circulation Management Knowledge Marketing Corey McMahon, UBM Canon 310/445-4200 • Fax: 310/445-4299 DEPARTMENTAL STAFF Creative Director Marco Aguilera Senior Art Director Oovaise Mohammed Publications Production Director Jeff Tade Production Manager Anbarasan Mannar Production Coordinator Nadheesh George Marketing Manager Steven Carlisle EXECUTIVE OFFICERS Chief Executive Offcer, UBM Tim Cobbold Chief Executive Offcer, UBM Americas Simon Foster Executive Vice President, Managing Director Josh Dome Senior Vice President/Portfolio Director Stephen Corrick Vice President, Strategic Operations Roger Burg Senior Vice President/Content & Strategy Pam Moore Senior Vice President/Integrated Media Amy Sklar What Will Drive Disruption? I n last issue's Industry Outlook feature, we examined the potential for disruption in pharmaceutical packag- ing. With more patients thanks to the Afordable Care Act, more cost sensitivities throughout the system, and an increasing population of chronically ill patients, will healthcare payers look for products that improve quality of care cost efciently? Could this drive disruption? If so, will regulatory and technical compliance in pharmaceutical packaging—the priorities expressed by respondents to our annual Salary and Industry Outlook survey—be enough? We posed these questions to Peter Schmitt, managing direc- tor of Montesino Associates who provided insights for the article. "The divide here is between market needs, which are verbalized but not addressed, and incumbent product needs, which remain the focus of pharma packaging profes- sionals," he says. A transition from "molecule centric" to "patient centric" may be in order. Schmitt also sees a "fault line" between baby boomers and millennials. "In general, boomers grew up and are comfortable with a molecule-centric universe," he says. "The molecule is developed, launched, improves patient health, and gener- ates large returns, and packaging's job is to keep risk (regulatory, supply-chain) far away. The supply chain is well known, and the U.S. distribution system works. The boomers do concede, but it is not seen as disruptive—there are new regulatory chal- lenges arriving, and they are incremental and manageable. While packaging profes- sionals will be busy handling serialization and other incremental regulatory changes, there is no real challenge to the incumbent packaging process." The millennials, however, do not see it this way at all, Schmitt observes. "First of all, they do not want to take medicine the way that boomers take medicine. They want it connected to their devices; they look at today's packages and are appalled. They get patient centric and really don't understand what they delay is. They want information that will improve their quality of life to be easily available to them and to medical professionals, and they like seeing incumbent items dis- rupted. Here you really do look at the possibility of disruptive rather than incre- mental changes." So change could be driven by the market, Schmitt suggests. But will this happen in a year, a decade, or ever? One survey respondent tells us that one of the biggest challenges faced is medi- cal insurance reimbursement: "FDA clearance was hard enough, but reimburse- ment is more difcult and extends [our] timeline to get a start-up in making money and therefore survive." So disruption seems possible, but only if the health- care payer system values its impact on healthcare quality, efectiveness, and efcien- cy—and therefore covers it. There's also the chance that patients themselves may simply pay out of pocket for innovations and technologies that could influence their own health. Who knew that consumers would pay hundreds of dollars out of pocket for smart phones instead of accepting phones covered by their plans? Daphne Allen, Editor

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