60 seconds with Yasmina Zegaoui, Senior Consultant
Q: Tell us about you
A: I am a pharmacist by training with a Master’s degree in Marketing Management. This has led me to work in community pharmacies, in hospitals as well as in the pharmaceutical industry before transitioning into Market Access more than four years ago. Market Access is a very exciting field combining my scientific background with the business and strategic aspect of the work we deliver for our clients. It also allows you to help clients across a variety of projects, therapy areas and research methodologies. For instance I’ve recently been involved in various research programmes focusing on biologics and biosimilars. Specfically on how the field is evolving from a regulatory, pricing and reimbursement point of view, given the increase in more affordable biosimilars being marketed across the globe. It is very interesting to follow the trends and policy implementation in an area where payers are looking for cost savings.
Outside of work I’m a big foodie, always on the look out for a new place to try. If not doing this, I tend to cook and bake at home. I love travelling as well and try to do it whenever I have a chance. I’m also taking boxing classes almost every week at a boxing club and am part of a choir.
Q: What is your role at Lightning Health?
A: I am a Senior Consultant at Lightning Health. I like to define this role as the point of contact between the internal team and the client in order to ensure we deliver high quality work that directly meets the client’s objectives, as well as making sure this is timely and responsive to any evolving needs. It’s a key role that requires a good balance between expertise in the topic studied, the markets in scope, the methodology used, and strategic thinking to bring all the pieces of the puzzle together to provide our clients with actionable recommendations.
Q: Tell us more about your interests in biologics and biosimilars?
A: Biologic drugs are produced from living organisms or contain components of living organisms. They include a wide variety of products derived from humans, animals or microorganisms by using biotechnology. With the growing number of biologics losing their market exclusivity over recent years, similar versions have been developed and manufactured: this is what we call a biosimilar.
Biosimilars have brought with them new payment models and have disrupted the way payers manage therapy areas with the aim of ensuring access to more biologically manufactured drugs whilst constraining healthcare expenditure. Similarly, biosimilar-specific regulations have been introduced at the clinical level in some countries, for instance to ensure their uptake at the hospital level. The biologic/biosimilar space is rapidly evolving with a lot yet to be done, especially in the US where biosimilar uptake is slowly increasing. they are slowly being adopted by stakeholders.
Article published 17 June 2021.