In my mind, there was only one significant pharmaceutical industry story in 2010: the complete implosion of Johnson & Johnson. Around every corner, it was another recall and negative FDA inspection report. CNBC’s Jim Cramer has finally been inspired and realized what a ticking bomb J&J has become. Cramer has gotten on message with what the rest of us have known for a while, J&J’s only salvation will be in sacking (and publicly humiliating) CEO William Weldon.
The other industry story that merits an honorable mention is the layoff of hundreds of thousands of pharmaceutical employees as the industry begins to ready itself for the changes to come from healthcare reform. While some in Washington want to argue that healthcare reform will improve the nation’s economy, in the short term, hundreds of thousands of Americans have been thrown out of work - at the height of the recession.
As I look back, the other stories (including the passage of health reform) don’t even merit a ranking. Of course, healthcare reform is great political speaking points for politicians on both sides, but beyond some minor insurance reform provisions, it will neither improve the quality of health care in America, nor will it reduce the cost of care. It was an election year smokescreen.