Doctor with vaccine

Big Pharma Rivals Are Joining Hands To Fight Covid. The Unity Shouldn’t End With Pandemic

Pandemics make for strange bedfellows and behavior in the pharmaceutical industry.

The world is relying on drugmakers’ expertise to get us out of the Covid-19 crisis — initially with treatments to help lessen the risks from contracting the virus, and then ultimately with a vaccine. The high pressure, enormous need, and global attention are leading companies to try new things on the fly. Just last week, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. signed a pact with its erstwhile rival Roche Holding AG aimed at substantially boosting supplies of a potential treatment for Covid-19; it even made some monetary sacrifices to do so. And that’s only the latest example.

Much of what’s happening represents a war-time type response to a unique situation, and it may not be repeated. These are for-profit companies, after all, and they will act accordingly. But from an unprecedented vaccine hunt to international manufacturing deals, the drug industry’s response shows the possibilities of what a more collaborative medicine market could bring.