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In 2012, national drug spending sank 1%, according to the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. That marked the first ever decline in drug spending on record.

The drop isn't because we're suddenly healthier. Instead, it's because more than $35 billion of branded drugs lost patent protection.

The threat of generic competition has meant big changes in the way drugs are developed. Instead of expensive in-house research departments, drug makers are shifting to lower cost Contract Research Organizations ("CRO's") such as Covance Inc. (CVD).

Covance's drug services menu

Covance's products and services help drug makers identify new treatments, decide whether to pursue them and manage those treatments through required regulatory trials.

The suite of products and services include:...

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