Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Why LATAM Expansion is Needed to Support Biometrics Resource Growth in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Latin America (LATAM) is a region that is nearly untapped in the biometrics sector of the pharmaceutical industry and now the area has all the right conditions for this lack of attention to change. Despite remarkable strides in drug development globally, investments in new biometrics human capital have remained slow in LATAM. In April 2024, Intego Clinical announced a new office and investment in the LATAM region that is primed for exponential growth. 

The LATAM region is home to more than 650 million people, according to Statista, across diverse cultures and a dynamic pool of talent, resources, and opportunities. From the Mexican deserts to the tropical Central America, all the way to the Argentinian Patagonia, the region has the clear opportunity to contribute to the advancement of science and medicine if the investment is there globally. 

With this abundance of human capital, the LATAM region is underutilized in the area of technical data and analysis in the pharmaceutical industry.  

Barriers to entry? 

One of the key barriers to unlocking the full potential of talent in LATAM countries is the need to introduce significant training programs to provide greater opportunities for local people.  

This, and other challenges, such as political instability and English language proficiency have the potential to deter many from exploring opportunities there. From Intego Clinical’s perspective, Costa Rica holds many comparative advantages over other LATAM countries and provides an optimal environment for pharmaceutical innovation and growth. With its blossoming life sciences sector, political stability, top notch educational system, and supportive government policies, Costa Rica provides an ideal point of entry for those looking to expand into the region.  

CINDE, an expert organization with over 40 years in Foreign Direct Investment Promotion into Costa Rica has a number of resources on why Costa Rica is “a natural hub for life-centered solutions” and they have supported Intego Clinical in making the decision to enter the region to supplement their other global hubs in the US, Poland, and Ukraine.  

Right now, only a few hundred people in Costa Rica are involved in scientific research, according to The World Bank, but CINDE also shows that Costa Rica spends more than 7.4 percent of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on education. These statistics combined provide a near perfect environment to educate and grow the right workforce in this lucrative and lifesaving industry.  

Rising cost of the workforce 

Reuters just reported that US labor costs have accelerated in the first quarter of 2024, and these costs will continue to remain high for niche industries, like pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. It’s no secret that the industry has grappled with the challenge of rising labor costs, particularly in specialized fields like biometrics and data analysis. 

Intense competition for top talent has led to inflated salaries and benefits packages, especially when dealing with the scarcity of skilled biostatisticians and clinical programmers, for instance.   

As these labor costs continue to rise, many choose to explore other alternative strategies like outsourcing, technology integration, and education. Focusing on what can be controlled, Intego Clinical has taken a pioneering approach to educating and building talent, not just searching for it. 

Entering the pharmaceutical industry can be difficult if an individual takes the traditional scientific or mathematical path. Working with local colleges in key regions on creating statistical programming internship programs, Intego Clinical has given students the skills to build a strong lifelong career while serving the growing needs of an industry ripe for growth. 

It is these sorts of advanced programs that are needed in more areas throughout the LATAM region and across the world to strengthen the pharmaceutical industry talent pool.  

Now is the time to invest in LATAM 

Latin America’s rich history and diversity begs to be celebrated, and employers in the pharmaceutical industry stand to gain invaluable insights from a diverse set of demographics, backgrounds, preferences, and behaviors.  

To do this properly, companies must adopt a collaborative and forward-thinking mindset. This can be done by partnering with local stakeholders, including government agencies, academic institutions, and independent groups to help better navigate the unique intricacies present in the region.  

With a region driven by education and the need for stronger scientific careers, investing in LATAM has the potential to achieve meaningful impact at scale. Now is the time to invest in countries like Costa Rica, where Intego Clinical is currently working to empower not only the life sciences industry but the local people as well.

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