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Abbott's (ABT) New Pact to Advance Clinical Trials Diversity

Abbott Laboratories, Inc. ABT unveiled a number of new programmes within the framework of its multimillion-dollar drive to broaden participation in clinical trials and enhance care for underserved communities. The latest additions to Abbott's Diversity in Clinical Trials effort expand upon the alliances, awards and the emphasis on diverse participation in the business's own clinical trials during the initiative's first year.

Abbott's Diversity in Clinical Trials initiative aligns with the company's sustained focus for greater health equity, expanded access, affordability and removing barriers to life-saving technology and innovation.

More on the Initiative

The latest initiatives include a new initiative with the Norton Healthcare Foundation to develop and implement new models of sustainable clinical research alongside the Institute for Health Equity, a Part of Norton Healthcare, in Louisville, KY, a training course for clinical research coordinators in collaboration with Barnett International and a newly-established Diversity in Research Office at Abbott focused on ensuring diverse representation in clinical trials.

Abbott will collaborate with the Institute for Health Equity at Norton Healthcare through a new five-year commitment to develop research programme models that historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and clinics serving under-represented communities can use instead of designing and developing their own research programmes from scratch, which can be costly and resource-intensive.

To expand Abbott's focus on promoting diversity in the business's clinical trials and enhancing access to care for under-represented populations, the company established a Diversity in Research Office in addition to new external collaborations and initiatives.

Strategic Implications

To improve health equality, it is crucial to remove barriers to access clinical trials for underrepresented communities. Clinical trials are the source of new, inventive methods to combat diseases. To encourage even more diversity in our clinical trials and ensure that trials are given in more locations to reach underserved communities, Abbott has concentrated on removing barriers and putting in place new, long-lasting partnerships and programmes.

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As part of the programme, Abbott and Norton Healthcare will give community-based clinics a road map of best practises for setting up centres of excellence for clinical trial research. Grants will be available through the initiative to assist in the employment and training of research coordinators and data managers and direct the beginning of research programmes.

Industry Prospects

Per a report by Grand View Research, the global clinical trials market size was valued at $49.8 billion in 2022 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 5.8% by 2030.  Factors such as globalization of clinical trials, rapid technological evolution, and a rise in demand for CROs for conducting research activities are driving the market.

Recent Developments

In March 2023, Abbott’s latest addition to the Epic surgical valve platform, the Epi Max stented tissue valve, received FDA approval. The design of the device is optimized to improve valve blood flow and will be used to treat aortic regurgitation or stenosis.

In the same month, ABT announced new data from the meta-analysis of three randomized, controlled trials (CHAMPION, GUIDE-HF and LAPTOP-HF) presented at the Technology and Heart Failure Therapeutics Conference in Boston, MA. The studies revealed that the remote monitoring of patients with hemodynamic pressure sensing technology, such as its CardioMEMS HF System, can improve survival in heart failure patients with reduced ejection fraction.

Price Performance

In the past year, Abbott’s shares rose 0.7% against the industry’s fall of 27.8%.

Zacks Rank & Other Key Picks

Abbott currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the broader medical space are AmerisourceBergen Corporation ABC, Merit Medical Systems, Inc. MMSI and Cardinal Health, Inc. CAH.

AmerisourceBergen, carrying a Zacks Rank of 2, reported second-quarter fiscal 2023 adjusted EPS of $3.50, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 6.4%. Revenues of $ $63.46 billion outpaced the consensus mark by 4.4%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

AmerisourceBergen has a long-term estimated growth rate of 8.9%. ABC’s earnings surpassed estimates in all the trailing four quarters, the average being 3.1%.

Merit Medical reported a first-quarter 2023 adjusted EPS of 64 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 16.4%. Revenues of $297.6 million surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 5.9%. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #2.

Merit Medical has a long-term estimated growth rate of 11%. MMSI’s earnings surpassed estimates in all the trailing four quarters, the average surprise being 20.2%.

Cardinal Health reported a third-quarter fiscal 2023 adjusted EPS of $1.74, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 17.6%. Revenues of $50.49 billion surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 1.7%. It currently carries a Zacks Rank #2.

Cardinal Health has a long-term estimated growth rate of 12.4%. CAH’s earnings surpassed estimates in three of the trailing four quarters and missed in one, the average surprise being 12.3%.

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