Progress for an Aging Population

Progress for an Aging Population

08.14.14 | By Preet Bilinski

This week, CNBC Nightly Business Report’s series “Aging in America” addressed the impact the rapidly aging U.S. population has on the health care system. Bill Chin, PhRMA’s Executive Vice President of Science and Regulatory Affairs, discusses the issue.

With health care costs predicted to increase from 3.5 percent of GDP now to 5.6 percent in 2040 and 90 percent of seniors battling at least one chronic disease, Dr. Chin and Eli Lilly Bio-Medicines President David Ricks emphasized that medicines and biopharmaceuticals can make a difference. Here are some highlights of the progress we’re making:

  • More than 430 medicines are in development to treat 15 leading chronic diseases affecting seniors. The medicines in the pipeline build on the progress to date and hold the potential to further improve health outcomes and provide cost savings for the health care system as a whole.
  • The number of medicines in development compared to 10 years ago has more than doubled. The use of new medicines plays a large role in improved health outcomes, resulting in increased life expectancy by a full decade according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • Alzheimer’s medicines in development have more than tripled from 10 years ago, which is amazing when you consider the challenges researchers face.  A report on setbacks in Alzheimer’s research found that from 1998 through 2011, there were 101 unsuccessful attempts to develop drugs to treat Alzheimer’s.  In that time, only three new medicines were approved to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. In other words, for every one research project that yielded a new medicine, 34 fell short.Comment on this article



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