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It is amusing to read what people predict for a coming year. Some predictions are well reasoned, some are pretty obvious, some are silly, and some look silly when reread the following year. I ran up the boss’s electric bill looking up a few predictions for 2008 on the Internet, and here is a sampling of what I found:
Mobile content — think of video games or entire TV seasons on your iPhone — will be all the rage. (I predict a commensurate rise in traffic accidents.)
Queen Elizabeth will yield the British throne to Prince William, and Charles and Camilla will be the only ones in the U.K. who didn’t see it coming. The same blogger who wrote this on «thisisby.us» predicts Britney Spears’ accidental death in a stunt that earns her a Darwin Award.
There are lots of biblical-based predictions about earthquakes — one in Pennsylvania, of all places. Zodiac will win the Oscar for best picture, the bob will make a comeback as the must-have hairdo of the spring, and the dollar will fall to the level of the Mexican peso, forcing the U.S., Canada, and Mexico to form a common currency called the Amero. You can look it all up.
Healthcare, too, is fertile ground for predictions, many of them actually quite sensible. Three human resources companies say 2008 will be a breakout year for health savings accounts. Employers will start thinking more about value-based benefit designs. And many think that Congress, with a finger in the wind, will do a lot of grandstanding about follow-on biologics — then buck the issue to the 111th Congress. What a surprise.
The pages that follow in this issue of Biotechnology Healthcare are full of things we think you’ll hear more about in 2008. Like therapeutic vaccines. Senior editor Katherine Adams walks us through this smoking hot area of biologic drug development and its potentially profound effects on healthcare delivery and financing.
Like molecular diagnostics. Will this become standard medical practice in the age of biologics? Bank on it. Will it come cheaply? No. Bob Carlson talks with health plans about what they want to see in a test in exchange for agreeing to pay for it.
Like biotech’s experimentation with new lines of business. John Carroll reports on biotech’s adolescence. It’s not just large molecules anymore.
Like rebates for poor pharmaceutical outcomes. Like what’s driving benefit design changes. Like what pharma detailers need to do to stay relevant. I predict you’ll spend a lot of time with this issue of the magazine.
Oh, and one more prediction for the road: You’re going to love our new look in 2008. Stay tuned.