Biotech and Mental Health: How COVID Opened the Box

How COVID Unlocked Mental Health Awareness and Transformed Biotech Markets

Common issues related to poor internal controls for financial management...

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Regulatory Maelstrom

In biotech's bureaucracy, navigating regulations is a formidable task. Developing mental health therapies demands on varied and complex rules.

Lab Risks

Crafting mental health solutions in the research crucible is perilous. Clinical trial success is elusive, treatment efficacy uncertain, and approval processes labyrinthine.

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Lab Risks

Crafting mental health solutions in the research crucible is perilous. Clinical trial success is elusive, treatment efficacy uncertain, and approval processes labyrinthine.

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Market's Hesitation

Introducing groundbreaking mental health innovations requires strategic moves to win over healthcare systems, insurers, and skeptical hearts.

Lingering Stigma

Despite progress, stigma persists in mental health. Biotechs must not only battle in labs but also educate society, combating misgivings about crucial therapies.

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Lingering Stigma

Despite progress, stigma persists in mental health. Biotechs must not only battle in labs but also educate society, combating misgivings about crucial therapies.

Uncover the positive impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health awareness and investment. Speak with a Mazards representative today!

Mental health has been a rising topic for many years now and continues to build steam. This is partially due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which spread around the world in March 2020.

So what happened during that time? Why did mental health awareness make a positive leap during such a difficult and isolated time? What is our future health standard? And how is society, and the biotech markets, embracing this?

In this article we will take a look at the new wave of mental health awareness, what it means for the biotech global markets, and where mental health therapies will go from here. 

But first, let’s learn how COVID helped mental health awareness.  

What happened during lockdown? 

Although COVID-19 has had numerous negative impacts on mental health, the pandemic has also seen an increased level of awareness and the de-stigmatisation of mental health issues. 

‘The number of reported mental health cases grew because Gen Z and Millennials were stuck at home suffering—but they were finally raising their hands.’ said Zach Lomis, Life Sciences VC and Senior Advisor at Pangea Botanica, who shared his views on the positive effects COVID-19 had on biopharma, specifically within the Central Nervous System space. 

The pandemic has led to an increase in mental health challenges and a greater understanding of the importance of mental health. This has enabled more discussions about mental health, a greater acceptance of seeking help for mental health issues, and most importantly, more resources being made available to those who need them.  

Global markets

Lomis also acknowledged markets around the world who were not, or could not, speak out: ‘There are some places where mental health is not as broadly discussed. There's just no chance that people in [countries that did not have access to mental health resources] did not experience the same issues as those in the United States and Europe. Many people in this world don't realise what a mental health indication is and that there are therapies for it.’  

In countries like China, mental health biotech innovation has typically trails the US and Europe. “Me too” products are often created in response to what comes from the US and European markets. Very recently, however, mental health therapies have seen a rapid rise in China and Southeastern Asia. This may have been partially due to COVID, but some very public celebrity suicides raised awareness as well.

Mental Health Investment

The pandemic has also highlighted the need for greater investment in mental health services and increased access to mental health care. 

‘The COVID pandemic has made a great impact on biotech funding for mental health therapies,’ says Roop Chandwani, CEO of the global life sciences executive search firm, Mazards. ‘While the pandemic did create challenges for many industries, it has also led to a heightened interest and investment in the CNS space, specifically mental health research and development.’

An example of this trend is the increased funding that mental health startups have received from venture capitalists. According to data from Pitchbook, mental health startups raised $1.37 billion in venture capital funding in 2020, a significant increase from previous years. 

Large Pharma wanted in too

In addition to increased funding for startups, the pandemic has also led to increased investment in research and development for mental health treatments. 

‘Large pharmaceutical companies have increased their focus on developing treatments for mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety,’ says Aamir Butt, Chairman and CTO of Mazards, one of London's top senior leadership recruitment agencies who possess one of the most expansive global recruiters networks. ‘As well as researching the potential impact COVID-19 and other global events such as war have on mental health.

Conclusion

While the COVID pandemic was a struggle for many, it did have positive by-products. Overall, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to increased awareness of mental health issues and the need for more effective treatments. This has resulted in greater funding for research and development, as well as increased interest from investors in mental health startups.

But there is still far to go in meeting the mental health initiatives that are necessary globally. Many countries are not yet embracing these treatments for their citizens, leaving an opening for many health technology careers to come. This also leaves a large gap in the CNS market for biotech project managers as the rest of the world catches up. 

On top of that, the causes and environments which affect mental health alter each day, inferring that the mental health space will be critical for innovation for decades to come.  
 

Mazards, one of the top retained life science executive consulting groups in London, commissioned this piece from Dastrum, a digital marketing company. 

Join us in the conversation on mental health transformation and global biotech markets. Uncover the positive impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health awareness and investment. Start today to get the conversation rolling!

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