The Catalyst

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04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

Rare disease panel moderator Mike Huckman, Senior Vice President of MSLGROUP Healthcare and former CNBC commentator, asked panelists whether rare disease research is "having a moment" or whether this is a field that will continue to grow.

Genzyme President and CEO David Meeker responded that in his opinion, "this is an enduring need," reiterating that of 7,000 diseases, we only currently have 200-300 approved therapies.

04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

I won't get into the details of Malcolm Gladwell's incredibly interesting lunchtime speech about his new theory of the "inverted U." After all, I don't want to scoop his forthcoming book.

04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

Today's second panel discussed how the current environment in the U.S. - both from an economic standpoint and a policy standpoint - is affecting the healthcare ecosystem,

Former U.S. Representative Nancy Johnson (from my home state of Connecticut) gave an interesting, succinct overview of the question we all ask, whether from the private sector or the public sector: "How do you deliver affordability in healthcare and at the same time continue quality improvement processes?

04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

We often say that a medicine sitting on a pharmacy shelf isn't benefiting anyone. By the same token, a medicine that sits in a patient's cabinet isn't helping that patient, either.

During a panel on how to improve health outcomes through prevention, adherence and innovation, panelists spoke about how to improve the ways that patients comply their their prescribed treatment regimens.


Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Commerce released a new report showing that the intellectual property intensive industries - like the biopharmaceutical research sector - contribute $5 trillion and 40 million jobs to the U.S. economy (see the press release here).

04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

Speaking about the biopharmaceutical sector's presence in Massachusetts, Governor Deval Patrick discussed the Commonwealth's Life Sciences Initiative, a 10-year, $1 billion program intended to "spur private investment in innovation."

Since its launch, the program has seen every dollar of public investment attract three dollars in private investment, he said. The effect has been significant, driving job growth and spurring the state's already-strong biosciences cluster.

04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

In his opening address today, Sanofi CEO Christopher Viehbacher - speaking as the PhRMA chairman - explained why our annual meeting is being held this year in Boston: "Boston wasn't chosen at random. We're investing in R&D here. We've got some of the top world-class hospitals and universities here. The Milken Institute has consistently ranked Massachusetts as the leader of medical research and innovation in America."

04.12.12 | By Christian Clymer

This guest post comes from Manos Perros, head of the AstraZeneca Infection Innovative Medicines Unit.

At the PhRMA annual meeting this week, leaders from across the industry will highlight the power of partnerships and the impact of innovation on patients.

04.12.12 | By Greg Lopes

There's nothing more important for a patient than hope - especially for patients faced with a cancer diagnosis. And when faced with a choice between a treatment that offers a shot at longer-term survival vs. a treatment that guarantees a shorter survival gain, cancer patients take the gamble and choose hope.

These findings may not sound surprising. But what is surprising is that our current models for valuing new treatments do a very poor job recognizing this.

04.12.12 | By Kate Connors

We've traveled north to Boston for PhRMA's Annual Meeting, which begins today. My excellent colleague Christian has been doing some interviews leading up to our meeting and giving details about how to engage, but I wanted to give you all a reminder that our Website will be a great resource for those of you who aren't going to be able to join us.

04.11.12 | By Christian Clymer

Our guest post comes from Dennis Urbaniak, Vice President, U.S. Diabetes at Sanofi US.

Tomorrow, attendees at the PhRMA Annual Meeting will be discussing ways of improving health through innovation. I wanted to share some thoughts on this important topic as it relates to diabetes.


I'm blogging from the road this week, from the highly energized and hyper-organized National Prescription Drug Abuse Summit, sponsored by the well-known Kentucky organization, UNITE.

04.10.12 | By Christian Clymer

In my ongoing conversations about the upcoming PhRMA Annual Meeting, I was very fortunate to spend a few moments with Frank Oldham, the President and CEO of NAPWA. Frank is the model of a patient advocate. He has lived the struggles of the people he represents and is now using his voice and experience to fight for everyone living with HIV/AIDS. "We want people living with HIV to have the best possible care and treatment services as well as the best quality of life they can have," he says.

04.09.12 | By Greg Lopes
In the U.S. we spend more on cancer care than in other countries, but what are we getting for the additional money? I'm excited to say that new evidence is out that shows American cancer patients are not only living longer compared with European patients, but also that the monetary value of this enhanced survival also outweighs the treatment costs.
04.09.12 | By Christian Clymer

As we've been discussing here on The Catalyst, PhRMA will host its 2012 Annual Meeting this week on April 12 and 13 in Boston ("Making Medicines Do More"). We'll be bringing together industry CEOs, patient and advocacy groups, and PhRMA staff in a series of panels and group discussions to explore major issues and trends facing our industry.