The Catalyst

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11.11.11 | By Kate Connors
In today's Washington Post, Michael Gerson writes about the promise of the current war on AIDS: "the end of the global AIDS epidemic is suddenly, unexpectedly, within sight."
I seem to spend a lot of time writing about how medicine is constantly changing as we understand more and more about health, biology and as we develop better evidence about what works best in the treatment or prevention of disease or other adverse health conditions.
Making sure that patients have access to the medicines they need is - or should be - the top priority of any modern healthcare system. But recent government steps in Turkey will likely prevent patients from getting access to critical medicines.
11.08.11 | By Preet Bilinski

Recently, PhRMA attended the first "moving day" in the Capital Area and I'm not referring to packing boxes and moving tape. The National Parkinson's Foundation held its inaugural Moving Day at the Washington Nationals Ball Park. The event included a fundraiser walk, a Movement Pavilion, music and dancing.

Here at The Catalyst, we write a lot about policies and proposals to improve healthcare and how best to improve access to medicines. Sometimes, however, it is good to be reminded of why America's biopharmaceutical research companies do what they do: help patients battle disease.
Over at the New York Times opinion page, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel has an interesting on-line commentary on healthcare spending and proposals to control it. Dr. Emanuel looks at where policy proponents on both sides of the political aisle would go to make cuts and has some interesting observations about the weaknesses of various proposals.
I want to recommend PhRMA President John Castellani's op/ed on the global battle against HIV/AIDS in today's The Hill newspaper. The upshot is the work being done by biopharmaceutical research companies around the world to help improve global access to medicines to fight HIV/AIDS. In part, Mr. Castellani writes:
Drug shortages have been in the news quite a bit lately, and there have been some major developments in that arena this week. President Obama just signed an Executive Order yesterday which speaks directly to this critically important issue, and it's worth taking a few minutes to describe what the Order will do.
11.01.11 | By Greg Lopes
In a recent blog post in the Washington Post, Sarah Kliff highlights a new effort by the Bipartisan Policy Center to pitch their deficit reduction proposal for price controls in Medicare Part D, claiming that the projected long term costs of Medicare on prescription drugs will outpace spending on hospitals and doctors.
10.31.11 | By Greg Lopes
In case you missed it, Robert Book has an interesting story in Forbes on the President's jobs package and his proposal to impose rebates in Medicare Part D.
10.28.11 | By Kate Connors
This week, I spent a few days at an R&D facility belonging to one of PhRMA's member companies. This isn't the first time I've been able to tour a research lab, but this particular trip provided me with incredibly enlightening face time with many members of the staff there. From vaccines to intellectual property to global security, I had the chance to learn how this company goes about its business - not just from a policy standpoint - like how we at PhRMA tend to focus our attention - but every day.

Biopharmaceutical research companies have long supported efforts like Global Health Progress to identify global health challenges and find solutions.

10.25.11 | By Kate Connors
Previously on The Catalyst, I have written about what the passage of this year's patent reform law, the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, means to biopharmaceutical research companies. But in the grand scheme of things, we represent just one industry in America that relies on patents (and other forms of intellectual property) as an incentive for the work that we do.
10.20.11 | By Kate Connors

There probably aren't many of us who don't know seniors who get their prescription drug coverage through Medicare Part D. Now that the open enrollment period has begun - and ends early this year, on December 7 - it's helpful to remind those loved ones about the importance of evaluating their current plans to see if their needs are being met. If not, they can find out if there are better options available.

10.19.11 | By Greg Lopes
Yesterday, Medicare Today released the latest Part D satisfaction survey. The results of the survey show that once again enrollees are highly satisfied with the program - this year to the tune of an 88 percent overall satisfaction rate.