In August, Novartis announced plans to spin off its generic drug division, Sandoz, to increase its focus on patented prescription drugs.
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The chief executive of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis warned Thursday that the coronavirus pandemic is likely to settle into an epidemic, urging policymakers to fully fund pandemic preparedness. called to
“If you look at the last two years, there are populations that have built immunity, there are viruses that are changing, but what we are trying to settle into is a more endemic environment with regards to the coronavirus. Especially the Covid virus,” Novartis CEO Vas Narasimhan told CNBC at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
“While that would mean sporadic outbreaks would occur and would mean that there would be at-risk populations who would need to continue to be vaccinated, this would not have been the case with other coronaviruses over the past centuries. Similarly, humanity has adapted and is a kind of solution for this virus.”
Narasimhan, who has previously warned that future pandemics are certain, has made it clear that world leaders must learn from the coronavirus crisis to be better placed for future pandemics.
“I think what’s really important now is to turn our attention to pandemic preparedness for the future,” Narasimhan said.
“I don’t know if we’ve learned the lessons of the past that we need to invest in. [research and development]we need to invest more in preparedness for the next pandemic and I think it should be on the global agenda,” he added.
His comments came shortly after UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned that the world’s unpreparedness for future pandemics “increases credibility”.
Speaking at the WEF on Wednesday, Guterres said, “Somehow, despite what we have endured, we have not learned the global public health lessons of the pandemic. We are not ready for the pandemic to come.” Stated.
Last month, China abruptly ended most Covid-19 controls, causing a surge in infections among its 1.4 billion population.
Beijing reported on Saturday that about 60,000 people infected with Covid had died in hospitals since the country lifted strict Covid restrictions last month, a sharp increase from earlier figures.
Asked whether it made pharmacological sense for some governments to take stricter policies on the entry of Chinese nationals into their countries after Beijing reopened, Narasimhan said: “From an epidemiological point of view, I think you can certainly question that. We’ve learned the hard way no matter how these viruses travel, but they don’t pay much attention to borders.”
“I continue to believe that open borders and an open economy are the right solution for the world order,” he added.