7 days in healthcare (August 28th-September 3rd, 2023)



From the point of view of Biomedicine, it is worth highlighting how therapy with psychedelics is opening up among mental health professionals, especially for cases of depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, eating disorders and addictions.

As far as Global Health is concerned, a study of 18 clinical trials shows that screening for early detection of cancer does not make this population live longer than those who do not undergo this type of testing. WHO concern about blindness and vision disorders. More than 2.2 billion people globally have vision disorders, generally attributable to refractory disorders and cataracts.

In terms of International Health Policy, the expected bomb exploded from the application of the “Inflation Reduction Law”, approved in the USA in August 2022, which included something prohibited until now: price negotiation between pharmaceutical companies and Medicare. . The American government made public the 10 drugs that will be negotiated in 2023 and affects the main companies: Pfizer, Lilly, Novartis, AstraZeneca, J&J, etc. Although the established system is very gradual, since 10 drugs will be negotiated each year for the next four, the truth is that this breaks the status quo of the pharmaceutical industry not only in the USA (the largest drug market) but in the world. It is difficult to counter Biden’s argument, which he plans to use in the 2024 campaign, that Americans do not have to pay two to three times more for medicines than the rest of the developed countries, such as in Europe. However, The Economist, which recognizes the need for this price negotiation, nevertheless sees problems in its application due to the appeals filed by large pharmaceutical companies and the risk that these companies will distance themselves from the necessary medicines and concentrate on others unrelated to price control. He also says that if R&D expenses are taken into account, the profitability of pharmaceutical companies is not extraordinary, when compared to the companies in the S&P 500.

If we talk about National Health Policy (Spain), the incidence of covid shoots up by 70% in just one week. The Ministry of Health recommends the fifth dose to selected groups: over 60 years of age, health personnel and the vulnerable. The Supreme Court faces a complex issue: the ruling on thousands of compensation payments to businessmen due to the pandemic. These are property claims to the State due to Covid-19 from businessmen and self-employed workers, who are awaiting compensation for the damage caused by the restrictions during the states of alarm that were later cancelled.

In the field of Companies, on an international level, the most notable is the abandonment of CENTENE from the United Kingdom, where it had a chain of primary care centers and the CIRCLE hospital network. The movement follows his departure from Spain with the sale of Ribera. A concentration in the American market, difficulties with the anti-privatisation movements of healthcare in Europe and problems with hospital integration may be at the origin of the problems, to which perhaps we should also add an underdeveloped growth strategy for this American company in Europe. In any case, a shame, since CENTENE is a great American insurance company, with a lot to teach in the European world. As far as national news is concerned, Spain is the only country that has purchased (31 million euros) several million vaccines from HIPRA, which is not updated for the new strains. Big problem for the Ministry if it decides to use it.


Global Health

International health policy

  • USA
    • The American government reveals the 10 drugs on which price negotiations will take place with Medicare. Under the proposed reform the minimum price decrease will be 25%. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the savings to the public coffers will be $100 billion over a decade. The affected companies are BMS, Pfizer, Boeheringer, Lilly, J&J, Merck, AstraZeneca, Novartis, Amgen, AbbVie, Novonordisk (
    • The Economist, critical of the American government’s measure, although it recognizes that price negotiation was obligatory. He says that the prohibition on negotiation was nonsense, but the proposed negotiation system could have perverse effects. If R&D expenses are taken into account, pharmaceutical companies do not have extraordinary profits, compared to those of the S&P 500 (https://www.ecocom/leaders/2023/08/30/americas-new-drug-pricing-rules-have-perverse-consequences)
    • Biden makes the negotiation of drug prices one of the central axes of his campaign for 2024, despite the fact that the price reduction will not begin until 2026 and that is if the law resists all judicial attacks (
    • Opinion article in FT: “The world needs to stop depending on the American pharmaceutical industry.” Americans pay up to three times more than other developed countries for medications. The American market is the main market for pharmaceutical companies. This policy is popular among Americans, but it may affect drug R&D globally. Pharmaceutical companies can orient themselves from the most needed medicines to those that escape price control (

National health policy

  • Judicial consequences of the pandemic
    • The Supreme Court faces the sentencing of thousands of compensations to businessmen due to the pandemic. These are property claims to the State due to Covid-19 from businessmen and self-employed workers, who are awaiting compensation for the damage caused by the restrictions during the states of alarm that were later cancelled. About 9,000 resources are expected. The sentence is very complex, due, among other things, to the high economic amount that it could represent (





7 days in healthcare (January 23rd-29th, 2023)



From the point of view of Biomedicine, it is worth highlighting, as the Nature article does, that among the 7 most promising technologies for 2023, at least three are directly related to biomedicine. It seems that not only neurons have a role in brain function, but also a relevant role of glial cells in certain disorders is beginning to be recognized.

As regards Global Health, the WHO requests 2.5 billion dollars to deal with health emergencies, particularly in Yemen, Afghanistan, Syria and Ethiopia.

As for International Health Policy, a consensus began to be created three years after the start of the pandemic that, although not totally overcome, it is no longer the emergency that it was. The problems in China with the covid continue. The crisis in the NHS is the biggest for many years. Basically, there are two positions: the one that seems to be held by the current conservative government that the system is unsustainable without co-payments and very profound changes; or the one represented by The Lancet, which says that the system is perfectly viable, if it is provided with more resources. What is clear is that the UK lags behind other European countries in many resources (hospital beds etc.). Two good news in terms of health policy are led by countries that are not usually at the forefront on these issues: the smoking ban in Mexico and the mental health law in Nigeria. Tensions between governments and pharmaceutical companies over the price of medicines are increasing and this time they are not only in Europe, but also in the United States (the largest pharmaceutical market).

If we talk about National Health Policy (Spain), the incidence of covid continues to drop, although mortality remains high (above 250 deaths per week). The medical conflict in public health continues, mainly in Primary Care. While there are communities that have reached agreements (Andalusia, Navarra, Aragon, Extremadura), in others (Madrid, Catalonia) there does not seem to be any sign of agreement, which makes us think and we will have to draw conclusions about different behaviors of the Administrations and of medical leaders. Conflict also between private health doctors and health insurers. It seems that the Equity Law is going ahead, after Darias’ agreement with Podemos. Interesting agreement in Madrid so that hospital specialists can also take leave. Aragon proposes that the issue of health be dealt with in the President’s Conference, which seems reasonable, given the seriousness of the problems, although the document of said community does not contain great innovative elements. After the more than debatable success of the operations in Alzira and Torrevieja, it seems that the Valencian government also wants to rescue Denia. At this point, a deeper and more articulate justification of political decisions should be demanded.

In the field of Companies, at the international level, it is necessary to highlight the great activity of private equity companies worldwide in the field of health, as revealed by the Bain report. In Spain, Ribera Salud leaves Extremadura. Important investments in our country from Bayer and Novartis are confirmed


Global Health

International Health Policy

National health policy


7 days in healthcare (January 9th-15th, 2023)



From the point of view of Biomedicine, everything seems to indicate that important advances in the diagnosis and treatment of certain diseases are coming in the not too distant future, with cancer vaccines, the new FLASH radiotherapy, the diagnostic revolution of virtual biopsies and the incorporation of certain devices (such as smart watches) in the prevention and monitoring of certain pathologies.

With regard to Global Health, it should be noted that climate change seriously threatens our health, according to The Lancet. Another important article in this magazine refers to the fact that the covid has revealed the inequalities between social groups and countries in dealing with the pandemic, as well as the absence of a global health architecture.

As for International Health Policy, with regard to covid, an editorial in The Lancet says that far from being overcome, 2023 brings new concerns, such as the impact of the situation in China or the new form XBB.1.5 in the United States. In China, the post-covid zero situation continues, officially acknowledging almost 60,000 deaths in the last month, despite the fact that the WHO insists on the request for more transparency in that country. In the United States, the abortion pill, according to the FDA, can already be purchased in pharmacies and by mail order, even in states where abortion is totally prohibited, which indicates the difficulty of shortcuts and of wanting to close doors to the field. In the United Kingdom the serious crisis of the NHS continues. The health minister of the shadow Labor cabinet publishes in the Financial Times an article with a long-term approach to reforms, something that, regardless of its content, we miss in Spain by all parties. An important editorial in The Economist where it says that part of the solution to the NHS’s problems involves solving the problems of Primary Care, proposing several changes, but without losing perspective that a large part of the problems are in hospitals, with the situation of waiting lists and emergencies. He also opposes the Labor Party’s proposal, made last week, to end the independent mini-company character of Primary Care in the UK, in order to make primary care physicians salaried. The Economist carries out a study that says that in the United Kingdom there are 260 deaths a week (more than 12,000 a year) as a result of delays in the emergency room. The British are turning more and more to private healthcare, as increase problems in the public sector. The EU devises plans to avoid medicine shortages and dependence on China.

If we talk about National Health Policy (Spain), the drop in the incidence of covid continues, despite the situation in China and the American variant called Kraken. The Primary Care strike in the Community of Madrid is reactivated and a strike is on the brink in 8 autonomous communities, while the emergencies are collapsed. Despite the plans, recent studies show that almost half of public health workers are temporary. In relation to the Strategic Plan of the pharmaceutical industry, both BIOSIM and AESEG, as well as the representatives of orphan drugs, position themselves with requests, in a clear attempt not to leave this plan only in the hands of large innovative companies, as suggested by the photo of La Moncloa, with Sánchez meeting with the main leaders of pharmaceutical multinationals.

In the field of Companies, internationally, relevant news for Pfizer, BioNTech and AstraZeneca. In our country, it is worth noting the steps taken by Viamed (new hospital in Tarragona), Ribera (great growth in turnover in 2022), Miranza (which continues its growth), Korian (which is preparing to integrate Group 5) and the CUN (which has just renovated part of its hospitalization area). For its part, KKR has completed the acquisition of IVI, an important in vitro fertilization company of Spanish origin.


Global Health

International Health Policy

National health policy


7 days in healthcare (January 2nd-8th, 2023)



From the point of view of Biomedicine, it is important to highlight significant advances in the treatment of some diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, breast cancer (a project inspired in its day by José Baselga), brain tumors, including the dreaded glioblastoma multiforme, and resistant tuberculosis.

With regard to Global Health, the WHO warns of global health threats in 2023: the Ebola outbreak in Uganda, which fortunately already seems to be in recession; the drought in the Horn of Africa; cholera, endemic in 69 countries; non-communicable diseases (particularly cardiovascular, diabetes, respiratory diseases and cancer), as well as the global stagnation due to the pandemic in the fight against various diseases: HIV, malaria and tuberculosis. Science reminds us that wastewater analysis has proven to be extremely useful for monitoring infectious diseases.

As for International Health Policy, with regard to covid, global concern is not so much for the cases that may come from China (which seem to correspond to the omicron that we already know) but for the new variant (Kraken) of United States, much more contagious than omicron and already affects a high percentage of cases in that country. The serious problems of the end of covid zero in China continue, with the opening of the country on January 8, which has been closed for three years. An editorial in The Economist looks at how the grand reopening may affect the global economy. Once again, the WHO says that mortality from covid in China is underestimated, if official figures are taken into account. Big change in the United States, where the abortion pill can be purchased in ordinary pharmacies. The large pharmacy chains, willing to participate in this sale. It must be remembered that a high percentage of abortions in the United States are already pharmacological. Serious crisis in the British National Health Service, with staff strikes, long waiting lists, saturation of emergencies and statements by unions and the Prime Minister. Labor wants to pass NHS employees to GPs (primary physicians), something that is in contradiction with the founding political pact of 1948 for the creation of the National Health Service, in which Aneurin Bevan participated. In France, health is also at the center of the political debate, with some statements on January 6 by President Macron, who considered among the solutions nothing less than ending fees per act, which in France are big words.

If we talk about National Health Policy (Spain), the year opens with the prospect of regional elections in 12 autonomous communities (May 28) and general elections at the end of the year, as well as a change in the head of the Ministry of Health. Several laws have been announced, including some advanced (new framework personnel statute, abortion, equity law), others more delayed (Public Health Agency, law of guarantees, possible reform of the dependency law). The Platform of Patient Organizations (POP) makes 10 proposals for chronic patients. As for professionals, some health insurance companies (DKV) have reacted quickly and announced increases in rates for doctors, which is undoubtedly a response to the criticism they had received from some medical associations, which even have raised certain protest actions. A piece of news says that the Zendal hospital has only 56 patients, which speaks of the fact that it has not yet found its place in Madrid’s health system, not surprising, since it seems that this hospital was established without the corresponding and obligatory Functional Plan (which defines the service portfolio, the population to be served, the incardination in the rest of the system, technology, personnel needs and other basic issues). Biosimilars, under the leadership of BIOSIM and starting in Extremadura, delve into the experience of shared benefit.

In the business sphere, in the international arena, Moderna acquires a genomics company. On the other hand, the completion of the Da Vinci robot patent will change the prospects for robotic surgery. At the national level, Ribera assumes the management of the Cascais hospital in Portugal, which is good news for public/private collaboration in our country.


Global Health

International Health Policy

National health policy


7 days in healthcare (October, 3rd-9th, 2022)



From the point of view of biomedicine, to review the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine, won by Svante Pääbo, a scientist who is recognized for his studies on the DNA of human ancestors, which allows us to better understand genetic evolution towards the “homo sapiens”. It seems that a study with Artificial Intelligence of the eye will help predict coronary risk in minutes, without the need for blood tests or other studies.

As far as Global Health is concerned, it is believed that malaria could be definitively eradicated from the world, with the help of new vaccines.

As for international health policy, alerts in Europe about avian flu and diphtheria, brought by immigrants from Africa and Asia. To highlight the changes in Portugal, which incorporate an independent team to the management of the SNS.

If we talk about national health policy (Spain), the rise in covid cases prevents the Interterritorial Council from approving the abolition of masks on public transport. The health items in the General State Budgets are analyzed with a magnifying glass in the professional press, despite the low weight of the expenses of the Central Administration in the total health expenses. However, it allows to detect some priorities for the Ministry, although the economic items are usually below the challenges: primary care, genomic portfolio, mental health, dental care, primary care infrastructure, etc. The CEOE charges against the Equity Law, which it describes as “unprecedented risk”. The debates and controversies continue in relation to the delays in the incorporation of pharmaceutical innovation in Spain. However, these debates do not usually consider that the approval by the EMA of a medicine does not mean automatic public financing in Spain, according to article 92 of the Law on Guarantees and rational use of medicines, which establishes the “financing selective and not indiscriminate” according to a series of criteria, which are established. AESEG and BIOSIM no longer agree with the plan approved a couple of years ago on generics and biosimilars, but want the new approaches to be included in the Guarantees Law.

In the field of companies, in the international arena, BioNTech signs an agreement with Australia, for the establishment of research centers in that country. As for national news, the growing weight of online pharmacy (prescription drugs excluded by law). HM reinforces itself in Andalusia, incorporating four hospitals in Malaga into its network.


Global Health

International health policy

National health policy

  • General State Budgets (impact on health)



7 days in healthcare (August 15-21, 2022)


From the point of view of biomedicine, the first drug is prepared using CRISPR (gene editing) technology. Important publication from The Lancet in the largest effort yet to identify risk factors in relation to cancer. Not surprisingly, however, tobacco and alcohol are the biggest risk factors, particularly tobacco.

As far as Global Health is concerned, polio is back and the UK is now offering vaccinations to children in London between the ages of 1 and 9.

Regarding international health policy, the famous North American Inflation Reduction Act has been signed by President Biden. Despite its name, the law has more to do with climate change and health, especially drug prices. No large growth in monkeypox is predicted, based on modeling carried out by The Economist. Deaths from covid remain high (15,000 a week globally) warns the Director General of the WHO. The Director of the American CDC denounces serious failures in the management of covid and announces substantial changes in the functioning of this body. A clear contrast to what is happening in Spain, where no conclusions seem to be drawn from the management of covid, despite being one of the most affected countries in terms of the number of cases and mortality in relation to the population.

If we talk about national health policy (Spain), the good news are that covid continues to decline, although there are still 62 deaths per day. The approval of the State Center for Public Health, scheduled for next week, is possibly the biggest consequence of covid. The birth rate in Spain falls to historical lows.

In the field of companies, drug prices break historical records in the USA. In Spain, HIPRA is preparing to manufacture 250 million doses of covid vaccines, pending approval by the EMA.


Global Health

International health policy

National health policy



7 days in healthcare (May 16th-22nd, 2022)



From the point of view of biomedicine, there seems to be new evidence of the relationship between acute childhood hepatitis and COVID. Interesting articles on how COVID can affect the brain, generating a kind of “dementia epidemic” and what long covid is and how to treat it.

Regarding Global Health, possible alarming effects of a global food crisis resulting from the war in Ukraine and its consequences. Report on serious deficiencies of “assisted technologies” (basically, wheelchairs, glasses and hearing aids) in a large part of the world’s population. The shortage of covid vaccine production in African countries continues to be denounced.

As for international health policy, an article in The Economist takes the drama out of “monkey pox”, saying that it is nothing comparable to what covid represented. Catastrophe due to covid in North Korea, a country that did not take advantage of its total closure during the pandemic to favor the immunization of its population and the reinforcement of its health system. Also, very reluctant to accept foreign aid. Isolated dictatorship things. Interesting experiment in New Zealand on a generation without tobacco.

If we talk about national health policy (Spain), the Ministry of Health has issued a protocol on monkeypox, about which there are some interesting statements by López Acuña, who also takes the drama out of this epidemic. Approved in the Council of Ministers the new abortion law, destined, probably, not to solve anything and to generate artificial problems. The SEMFYC (association of primary care doctors) warns about the need for 10,000 primary care doctors, to cover the generational change.

In the field of companies, the initiative of the Government of Catalonia to create a commission to study the new location of the Hospital Clínic should be highlighted. Surely an avant-garde and innovative hospital does not fit well in the current old building. A true revolution in the hospital and urban world of Barcelona. The AESEG warns about the low price of certain basic medicines, which discourages their production.


Global health

International health policy

  • Monkeypox

o Monkeypox spreads to several countries: after originating from a traveler from Nigeria, the disease has spread to the United States, Australia, Canada and 8 European countries. According to The Economist, there is nothing to worry about and it has nothing to do with the covid pandemic, which took the world unprepared, without vaccines or treatments ( /05/20/monkeypox-is-popping-up-in-more-countries-how-worrying-is-this)

o What is Monkeypox, article in the New York Times (

o We will see more cases of monkeypox, warns a British scientist ( scientists)

  • COVID-19

o Taiwan gradually renounces the “zero-covid” policy, assuming that the number of cases will increase ( -a-peu-a-politique-zero-covid_6126267_3244.html)

o Catastrophe in North Korea. The country was closed during the pandemic, but it was not used to immunize the population or strengthen the health system ( -wildfire-in-north-korea)

o Shanghai is going to open its commerce in stages ( deux-mois-de-confinement_6126204_3244.html)

o How Australia saved thousands of lives from covid, in contrast to what happened in the United States (

  • Other themes

o The policy on the possible annulment of the Roe v Wade judgment in the United States continues, important editorial in Science (

o A generation without tobacco in New Zealand, prohibited for all those born since January 1, 2009. Malaysia and Denmark are also considering similar measures ( 6736(22)00925-4/fulltext)

o The United States, Switzerland and Norway lead the world in spending on health per capita ( in-medical-care.html)

o The NHS needs access to medical data to save lives, interesting article in the Financial Times (

o A report commissioned by the Minister for Health proposes that the legal smoking age in the UK be 21 ( -in-england-could-be-raised-to-21-report)

National health policy

  • Monkeypox

o Protocol of the Ministry of Health against monkeypox (

o Interesting statements by López Acuña: there is no reason for social alarm over monkeypox (

o Spain will buy thousands of vaccines for the monkeypox disease ( -the-traditional-smallpox-to-deal-with-the-monkey-virus-outbreak.html)


o The cumulative incidence, on the rise: 848 points ( -points_114982_102.html)

  • Regulatory announcements

o The new abortion law approved by the Council of Ministers ( your-address.html)

  • Other themes

o Spain, leader in the consumption of benzodiazepines for anxiety and insomnia (

o The National Health System (SNS) would need 10,000 family doctors for generational turnover, according to a study by the Spanish Society of Family and Community Medicine (SEMFYC) ( -of-family-more-to-guarantee-the-generational-handover.html)

o The strike of specialist doctors in Madrid, suspended after an agreement ( contest.html)

o Spain, last in mental health, there are only 2,800 psychologists in public health, only 344 in Primary Care ( -psychologists-public-health/672183163_0.html)

o Private healthcare works on a code of good practice: joint initiative of ATA (Association of Self-Employed) and ASPE ( your-own-code-of-good-practices-4162)


  • International News

o Big Pharma pressures the G20 to prepare for the next pandemic (

o Monkeypox shoots up the stock of the only company that manufactures them: Bavarian Nordic (

  • National News

o Dependency insurance grows 71.4% and closes the first quarter with 132,000 users ( the-first-quarter-with-132000-users.html)

o Catalonia constitutes the commission that will decide the location of the new Clinic Hospital (ón-la-comision-que-decidira-el-emplazamiento-del-nuevo-hospital-clinic. html)

o Colgate-Palmolive breaks into the bid for Lácer (

o AESEG asks to raise the price of essential medicines to produce them ( -essential-to-produce-them.html)



7 days in healthcare (February 7-13, 2022)


From the point of view of biomedicine, to highlight the advances that allow paraplegics to walk, through spinal implants.

Regarding Global Health, it is worth mentioning the WHO warning that the pandemic has threatened the health systems of 90% of the countries; as well as the health problems in Burkina Faso and Afghanistan.

In relation to international health policy, the WHO statement that the pandemic is not over and that more variants are expected should be highlighted. In some countries the restrictions are lifted (United Kingdom, Norway) while in others (Germany) they continue. HERA (the new European Authority for Preparedness and Response to Health Emergencies) begins its steps and will receive a budget of 1,300 million euros in 2022.

In national health policy, we are witnessing a relaxation of the restriction measures, as a consequence of the decrease in the figures of the pandemic (less than 1,500 per 100,000 inhabitants), although these figures are still high and are accompanied by high mortality. Nor is the appearance of new variants ruled out. On the other hand, in the face of loud announcements by the Government, the incorporation of Paxlovid, Pfizer’s medication against serious cases of COVID, is delayed. Work begins for the creation of the State Public Health Surveillance Network, one of the conclusions of the work of the Commission for Social and Economic Reconstruction of the Congress of Deputies of July 3, 2020 (point 19.2), although in the conclusions of the commission there was talk of “urgently implementing” this issue. It is addressed two years after the first death from covid. Also noteworthy is the great concern and mobilizations carried out by the nursing sector. The General Council of Nursing Colleges publishes a Decalogue, whose first point is “Spain without nurses” and the last “Enough of ignoring us”. Spain leads the consumption of anxiolytics, which does not seem like a minor problem.

As far as company news is concerned, mention should be made of the FDA’s delay in approving Pfizer’s vaccine for children under 5 years of age. Also the entry of Nestlé in the field of health, positioning itself in weight control.


  • Spinal implants allow paraplegics to walk, swim and ride a bike. Breakthrough driven by Grégoire Courtine, a neuroscientist at the Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, and Jocelyne Bloch, a neurosurgeon at Lausanne University Hospital. The rupture of the cord prevents the transmission of electrical signals from the brain, which allows the implanted device (The Economist, 12 February 22)
  • There is a lack of evidence that current covid vaccines will produce herd immunity (American Journal of Medicine, February 6, 22)
  • A study analyzes the prevalence of loneliness in 113 countries, as a major health and social problem (BMJ, February 9, 22


  • The WHO warns that more than 90% of the countries have seen their health system threatened by the pandemic (interruptions in services, difficulties in accessing care, problems with emergency care) (La Razón, February 7, 22)
  • The WHO denounces actions by the pharmaceutical industry that make it difficult to bring covid vaccines to Africa. The declaration affects a foundation (kENUP) linked to BioNTech (BMJ, February 9, 22)
  • The armed conflict in the Sahel region (Burkina Faso) endangers the already weak health system (The Lancet, February 12, 22)
  • Afghanistan’s health system is collapsing under stress (NYT, February 6, 22)
  • Ukraine, fears that a health system that had made great progress in recent times is going into crisis due to the possible conflict (The Lancet 12 February 22)



o The WHO warns that the pandemic is not over and that more variants are expected (ABC, February 12, 22)

o Covid levels remain high in many parts of Europe, but restrictions tend to be lifted (FT, February 11, 22)

o The 1918 flu had devastating effects the third year (Washington Post, February 6, 22)

o Protests against covid restrictions in France and the Netherlands (The Guardian, February 12, 22)

o Waiting lists in England exceed 6 million for the first time (FT, 10 February 22)

o Boris Johnson plans to end the restrictions due to covid a month earlier than planned (The Guardian, February 9, 22)

o China, ready to impose greater confinements in Hong Kong (FT, February 11, 22)

o A study detects that NYC deer are infected by covid (NYT, February 7, 22)

o Seven out of ten vaccines administered in the EU are from Pfizer (El Español, February 11, 22)

o Norway lifts all restrictions against the pandemic (El País, February 13, 22)

o Germany will not lift the restrictions against covid (El Mundo, February 10, 22)

  • Other issues

o HERA (the new European Authority for Preparedness and Response to Health Emergencies) will have a total budget of 1,300 million in 2022 (diariofarma, February 10, 22)

o The EFPIA publishes a white paper on the effectiveness of public procurement of medicines in the EU (EFPIA, February 22)

o It seems that the attempts of the United States government to lower the price of medicines by allowing the negotiation of their prices in Medicare are failing (NEJM, February 9, 22)



o The low incidence of 1,500 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in Spain, although with 389 deaths on the last day with official information (La Vanguardia, February 11, 22)

o Delays in the incorporation of Paxlovid, Pfizer’s medication against severe COVID (El Periódico de España, February 11, 22)

  • Political announcements

o Spain begins to create the pandemic alert network, creating the State Public Health Surveillance Network (El Español, 13 February 22)

  • Other issues

o The nursing sector stars in demonstrations throughout Spain (La Razón, February 9, 22)

o Decalogue published by the General Council of Nursing Colleges (CGCE, February, 2022)

o Spain leads the consumption of anxiolytics in Europe, according to the latest report from the Narcotics Control Board (INCB), more than 2.5 million people consume psychotropic drugs daily (La Razón, February 12, 22)

o Spain doubles the number of leprosy cases in 2021 (The Objective, February 7, 22)

o The OMC (Collegiate Medical Organization), against Montero’s campaign on “obstetric violence” (El Español, February 10, 22)

o The Ombudsman intervenes in response to complaints of health cuts to MUFACE officials (La Razón, February 10, 22)

o In a meeting convened by the IMAS Foundation, specialists demand a digital health strategy (Health Act, February 9, 22)

o Cantabria wants to turn Valdecilla into a reference in precision medicine (Sanitary Act, February 10, 22)


  • Important medical bet by Amazon that is revolutionizing the health system in the USA (El Economista, February 12, 22)
  • The FDA puts a brake on the approval of Pfizer’s covid vaccine below 5 years (The Guardian, February 11, 22)
  • Novavax, the fifth vaccine, arrives in Europe the last week of February (diariofarma, February 10, 22)
  • China conditionally approves Pfizer’s treatment Paxlovid (The Guardian, 12 February 22)
  • CEOE: Adriana Bonezzi, new head of the health area (Medical Writing, February 7, 22)
  • Wivi vision. company that evaluates the capabilities of the visual system: agreement with General Óptica to implement it in its network of stores (PlantaDoce, February 8, 22)
  • Vithas joins forces with Genesis Care to launch a cancer center in Madrid (PlantaDoce, February 4, 22)
  • Pfizer more than doubles its profits in 2021, up to 22,000 million dollars (PlantaDoce, February 8, 22)
  • Nestlé Health Science buys Pronokal, positioning itself in the weight loss and control products sector (Diario Médico, February 7, 22)
  • J&J suspends the manufacture of its vaccine (Consalud, February 11, 22)
  • Dependency insurance grows 96% and closes 2021 with 128,000 insured (PlantaDoce, February 7, 22)
  • Durcal relies on Movistar to break into the elderly care segment (PlantaDoce, February 10, 22)
  • Nordic Cap and Amulet enter the bid for the IVI group, Morgan Stanley will receive the non-binding offers before February 23 (CincoDías, February 12, 22)



7 days in healthcare (6-12 December, 2021)




At the international level, the Israeli study published in the New England Journal of Medicine stands out, which showed, in a large sample of cases, a 90% decrease in mortality with the third dose. Also that the “omicron” variant extends to 57 countries. In the United Kingdom, plan B is activated, given the growth of the pandemic: teleworking, masks and COVID passport. The COVID pandemic is found to have exacerbated social inequalities globally.

Regarding national news, to highlight the accelerated growth of the pandemic, with figures that are already very worrying, although lower than other European countries. The government seems to trust everything to vaccines. Six communities are already at high risk. The Ministry advances a new strategy against smoking. COVID vaccination begins for children between 5 and 11 years old.

As for companies, many of them cancel Christmas celebrations, given the advance of the pandemic.


  • An Israeli study of 758,118 people who had received a third dose, after a full course with two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, showed that mortality was 90% lower than that of participants who had not received the third dose (NEJM , 8 Dec 21)
  • Afghanistan: collapse of the health system, WHO predicts that one million children will die of starvation this winter (BMJ, Dec 8, 21)
  • Health played a leading role in the COP26 climate conference (BMJ, Dec 7 21)
  • The “omicron” variant extends to 57 countries (The Guardian, 9 Dec 21)
  • Johnson activates plan B: teleworking, masks and COVID passports (The Guardian, 8 Dec 21)
  • COVID: More than 200 million Americans fully vaccinated (NYT, Dec 8, 219
  • The ‘omicron’ variant may produce 75,000 deaths by the end of April in the UK (The Guardian, Dec 11 21)
  • The COVID pandemic has exacerbated global inequalities, according to the “Global Inequality Report 2022” (Le Monde, 7 Dec 21)
  • Public Health expert Karl Lauterbach appointed Minister of Health in Germany (FT, Dec 6 21)
  • According to an article in the New York Times, the number of hospitalizations is now a better indicator of the evolution of COVID than the number of cases (NYT, Dec 11 21)
  • Fauci says that the “omicron” variant is more contagious but less serious (La Vanguardia, 7 Dec 21)


  • Spain exceeds 320 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days (Germany, 929; United Kingdom, 963; France, 875; Italy, 331; Portugal, 466; United States, 464; Austria, 1,215; Belgium, 2,082) ( Expansion, 9 Dec 21)
  • Hard headline of La Razón: “Europe faces «omicron» and Spain does nothing”. It refers to measures from the central government, which seems to trust everything to vaccination. The article presents the measures in the United Kingdom (telework, mask and covid passport); Germany (severe restrictions on the unvaccinated); France (closing of nightclubs from December 10); Italy (closing of events for unvaccinated); Austria (confinement of the entire population); Denmark (closure of nightlife venues); Ireland (closing of discos and shows); Sweden (vaccination certificate): Holland (closing of all non-essential shops after 5:00 p.m.) (La Razón, 10 Dec 21)
  • Six communities are already at high risk, according to the new health traffic light (, Dec 11, 21)
  • The new Strategy of the Ministry of Health against tobacco is presented: more taxes, more smoke-free spaces and less advertising (El País, Dec 8, 2021)
  • Spain approves childhood vaccination and will begin vaccination of children between 5 and 11 years old on December 15 (El País, 7 Dec 21)
  • Different vaccination strategies for children by communities: vaccination courses, hospitals and health centers or schools (El País, 10 Dec 21)
  • The intensivists, worried. In three weeks the number of admissions to ICU has tripled (El Periódico de España, Dec 12 21)
  • The birth rate in Spain falls by 5.4% in 2020 (PlantaDoce, Dec 9 21)


  • Companies cancel Christmas dinners and events and ask their staff to be prudent (El Confidencial, Dec 12 21)
  • Unilabs, until now from the Apax fund, acquired by the Danish family group A.P Moller Holding (Unilabs press release, 2 Dec 21)
  • Centene can sell its international businesses, in Spain Ribera (Forbes, Dec 10 21)
  • The alliance with Moderna bears fruit: Rovi enters the IBEX, instead of Viscofán (Valencia Plaza, 9 Dec 21)
  • Vivanta focuses its activity on dental to continue growing (PlantaDoce, 3 Dec 21)
  • Quirónsalud consolidates in Latin America (ConSalud, Dec 10 21)
  • The San Juan de Dios Hospital closes in Burgos (Medical Writing, Dec 10 21)
  • Ubikare, the healthcare start-up owned by Mutua, arrives in Madrid (10 Dec 219
  • Fertility moves more than 4,000 million in corporate operations (El Economista, Dec 11 21)
  • Otsu fuels its male sexual health business: ten new openings in 2022 (PlantaDoce, 9 Dec 21)

7 days in healthcare (15-21 November, 2021)



From the international point of view, the plan of the American Democrats to negotiate the price of medicines and its possible impact on innovation continues to be discussed; Europe is once again the engine of the pandemic, with demonstrations in some European cities against confinements and COVID passport measures; and finally, the United States reach a peak in mortality from opioid as the covid pandemic continues.

At the national level, four elements of interest: 1. Spain exceeds 100 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, although the situation is worrying, nothing to do with that of other European countries; 2. The state-of-the-art health PERTE is presented, doubts regarding its reformist impact; 3. Publication of the draft law that aims to consolidate the universality and equity of our National Health System; 4. The waiting lists are published as of June 30, 2021.

In terms of company news, perhaps most relevant is that both Merck and Pfizer’s COVID therapies will be available in generics for low- and middle-income countries.


  • Request for action in Afghanistan, given the food emergency, by the director of the World Food Program. Disaster is the consequence of conflict, economic collapse and drought (The Lancet, Nov 20 21)
  • Intense debate in the USA about the consequences for pharmaceutical innovation of the regulatory framework on the price of drugs that the Biden Administration wants to approve (NEJM, Nov 18, 21)
  • Democrats in the USA have a plan to reduce the price of drugs, without harming innovation (The Economist, Nov 20 21)
  • A year after the decision of the British NHS to move towards zero carbon emissions by the health system, another 13 countries, including Spain, have joined this approach, which entails important changes, especially in supply chains (The Lancet, Nov 17 21)
  • Europe is once again the engine of the pandemic, with the extremely worrying situation in Austria, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Hungary, Romania and Russia, among others (Le Monde, 17 Nov 21)
  • Austria returns to lockdown (The Guardian, Nov 18 21)
  • Thousands of people protest in Vienna against confinement and mandatory vaccination (El País, 20 Nov 21)
  • Germany tightens restrictions on the unvaccinated and will force health workers and nursing home workers to be vaccinated (El País, 18 Nov 21)
  • Bavaria cancels Christmas markets, given the growth of the pandemic (The Guardian, 19 Nov 21)
  • The third dose can be extended to all adults, says British Health Minister Sajid Javid (The Guardian,
  • The majority of the European population, in favor of COVID passports (The Guardian, 19 Nov 21)
  • The use of masks reduces the incidence by 53%, according to an international study published in the British Medical Journal (The Guardian, 18 Nov 21)
  • In the USA, mortality from opioid overdose reaches record growth, while the pandemic continues (NYT, Nov 17, 21)
  • Fauci says the pandemic may be under control in 2022, with more third doses (The Guardian, Nov 17, 21)
  • Europe will prioritize the local manufacture of drugs to gain autonomy. This coming week the new EU pharmaceutical strategy will be approved (El Economista 21 Nov 21)


  • Spain exceeds 100 cases per 100,000 inhabitants for the first time in two months (El País, 18 Nov 21). Comment: although the situation is worrying, it has nothing to do, however serious, with that of other parts of Europe. It seems that the high immunization, the fifth wave and the high percentage of vaccination are at the origin of this situation. However, we do not know if this differential is going to be maintained or we are heading towards a situation similar to that of most of the rest of Europe.
  • The autonomous communities denounce that they once again lack legal tools in the face of another wave of the pandemic (El Mundo, Nov 21, 21)
  • The state-of-the-art health PERTE is presented, which entails 1,489 million investment until 2023 (diariofarma, 15 Nov 21). Comment: there is no transformation in the sense of reforming the health system (which they consider good) and it is an investment aimed at the biotechnology industry. Mentions of primary care are imprecise. In summary: facing the transformation of the health system and to what extent European funds can help, including digitization, is an issue that remains to be seen
  • Published the Draft Law that modifies various regulations to consolidate equity, universality and cohesion of the National Health System, which seeks to prevent co-payments and promote direct management (Diario Médico, Nov 16 21)
  • Waiting lists published as of June 30, 2021: 121 days on average to undergo surgery and 75 days to visit a specialist. 661,162 people, waiting for an intervention. The lists are close to those in 2019 (La Vanguardia, Nov 26 21)
  • ASPE offers its collaboration to end the waiting lists (Medical Redaction, Nov 18 21)
  • Summer-22 is set as the limit to reform the Framework Statute in the summer of 2022, for which it is announced that there will be minor changes to adapt to the Basic Statute of Public Employees and the labour conditions of residents (Diario Médico, Nov 18, 21)
  • The Public Health Center will go to the Council of Ministers soon (Consalud, 19 Nov 21)


  • Pfizer’s anticovid pill will be sold as a generic drug in 95 low- and middle-income countries, mainly in Africa and Asia, although the agreement excludes some countries hit hard by the pandemic. Previously, Merck had announced something similar (NYT, Nov 16 21)
  • European regulators, with serious doubts about Biogen’s Alzheimer’s drug (FT, Nov 17 21)
  • DKV remains in the MUFACE system (company declarations)
  • The EMA launches the emergency authorization process for the NOVAVAX vaccine, which would be the first vaccine with recombinant proteins developed in the European Union (Expansión, 18 Nov 21)
  • Quirónsalud launches two new phase I clinical trial units in Madrid and Barcelona, ​​following an agreement with Next Oncology (Diario Médico, 19 Nov 21)
  • Prim improves its profit by 90% in the first nine months of the year, to 12 million (PlantaDoce, Nov 15, 21)
  • Moderna appoints new general manager for Spain and Portugal, Juan Carlos Gil (PlantaDoce, Nov 16 21)
  • Miranza expands its presence in the Basque Country and opens a new center in Bilbao (PlantaDoce, 15 Nov 21)
  • The German biotechnology company CureVac will begin second-generation vaccine trials (ConSalud, 19 Nov 21)
  • Rovi expects to reach growth forecasts for 2023 this year (CincoDías, Nov 16, 21)
  • Pfizer, BioNTech and Moderna expect to bill 62,000 million euros in 2021 with their vaccines (CincoDías, 15 Nov 21)
  • The Spanish HIPRA vaccine will prove its effectiveness as a booster injection for Pfizer vaccinated (Expansión, 16 Nov 21)
  • USA will pay 4,650 million euros to Pfizer for 10 million anti-covid treatments (CincoDías, Nov 18, 21)
  • Almirall collapses on the stock market, after losing 40 million euros (Expansión, 15 Nov 21)