Michael Joe Cini
7th May 2019
Losses Predicted For Big Pharma
Big Pharma Stands To Lose $18.5 Billion If All 50 States Legalise Medical Marijuana
New research from New Frontier Data has investigated the impact the legalisation of medical marijuana could potentially have on the pharmaceutical industry. Known for its benefits in treating a number of chronic conditions such as epilepsy and pain, medical marijuana is still completely illegal in many of the 50 states in the US.
“If cannabis somehow managed to be adopted naionally, we would start to see a pattern of patients turning to medicinal marijuana as a substitute or a sequel to pharmaceuticals,” said Giadha Aguirre De Carcer, CEO and originator of New Frontier Data.
Scientists from New Frontier Data considered the top 9 conditions organised by the National Academies of Science that are most adequately treated by medical cannabis, namely: Epilepsy, Glaucoma, Tourette Syndrome, Chemotherapy induced nausea, Nerve Pain, Anexiety, PTSD and Chronic Pain.
The New Frontier Data study was based on a 2016 Health Affairs piece of research which concluded that states which had fully legalised medical cannabis saw an 11% decrease in sales of pharmaceutical drugs used to treat the above following legalisation. As a result they estimate that pharmaceutical companies could lose out on up to $18.5 billion between 2016 and 2019.
“The United States establishes 35% of the worldwide pharmaceutical market, the biggest market on the planet, and a major driver of the U.S. economy,” said Aguirre De Carcer. Nonetheless she believes the gains for the medical marijuana industry would still be negligible when considering the impact of the entire pharmaceutical industry as a whole. She is also clear about the future path for medical marijuana and its potential in offering serious benefits to a number of conditions, however he is cautious about progress, suggesting that legalisation may be slowed by interference from Big Pharma.
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