There are mixed forecasts as to how the economy will affect jobs in pharmaceutical services. Private analysts have estimated that the pharmaceutical companies will take a dramatic hit as people lose health coverage, and large numbers of drug patents expire. Other reports point that down economies actually spur growth in pharmaceutical sales because of increased rates of prescriptions for insomnia, depression and anxiety. The U.S. Department of Labor asserts that the industry should expect nearly 50,000 jobs to be lost between 2006 and 2016.
According to a report published by IMS Health, "the U.S. pharmaceutical market is expected to contract in 2009." As a result, the industry could lose thousands of jobs. The report cites a multitude of reasons for the reverse in growth, but lists the economy as one of the major factors. The report implies that as more and more Americans lose their jobs and therefore, lose their benefits, they will see the doctor less often and buy fewer prescriptions. Pressure from the government to reduce health care costs could also lead to pharmaceutical companies trimming off as many jobs as possible.
A faltering economy can have a positive impact on jobs in pharmaceutical services. IMS Health reported a 7 percent increase in sleeping pill prescriptions and a 15 percent increase in antidepressants in 2008. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, those who specialize in pharmaceutical sales and regulatory affairs will see job growth as the industry tries to both increase their sales and get new drugs approved in less time with fewer resources. IMS Health also expects the pharmaceutical industry to bolster record growth through 2013, after the economic crisis, leading to a sharp increase in job opportunities.
IMS Heath Reports
Prescriptions Rise as Economy Keeps People Up at Night, Even Though Marketing Spend Is Down By Rich Thomaselli
The Continuing Evolution of the Pharmaceutical Industry: Career Challenges and Opportunities
US Department of Labor