The Catalyst

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12.06.11 | By Kate Connors
Today's FDA publication of the biosimilars user fee performance goals letter represents an important step forward in the years-long effort to establish a science-based regulatory pathway for these medicines.
12.05.11 | By Greg Lopes
As you may be aware, the 2012 open enrollment period for Medicare Part D ends this Wednesday, December 7th - three weeks earlier than in previous years. So in this busy holiday season, please also take a moment to sign up for a Part D drug plan. Remember, you can switch plans during the open enrollment period as well, so review your current plan to make sure it still meets your medical needs.

The New York Times health section ran a fascinating story this week on how medicines are helping to revive patients once thought to be in a irreversible vegetative state. There is a lot of work still to be done to understand what is really going on and a lot of "how" and "why" questions are yet to be answered.

Yesterday, the PhRMA Foundation announced that it awarded grants to the University of Washington and Johns Hopkins University to develop a graduate-level comparative effectiveness research program, formally known as the PhRMA Foundation Center of Excellence for a Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) Educational Program.
12.01.11 | By Preet Bilinski
World AIDS Day is celebrated on December 1 each year around the world. It has become one of the most recognized international health days and a key opportunity to raise awareness, commemorate those who have passed on, and celebrate victories such as improved therapies, increased access to treatment and prevention services. See how the disease and the world have changed over the last 30 years in this brief video.

Lately, I've gained a bit of weight. In fact, according to the official definitions of "overweight" and "obese," which factor weight and height to determine body mass index (or BMI), I'm teetering between the two categories. For a guy who's always been fairly active, and who sees himself as a decent middle-aged athlete, it's somewhat demoralizing.

In a press release last week, PhRMA President and CEO John Castellani commended sponsors of a bill in Congress that would increase jail sentences for criminals caught selling counterfeit medicines.
11.30.11 | By Kate Connors
There's a phrase I often use - perhaps bordering on overuse. It's that innovation is both cumulative and cyclical. What does this mean?
I wanted to bring to your attention a recent piece by Sarika Bansal in Forbes. Ms. Bansal's piece is entitled "Top Five Ways Big Pharma Can Address Neglected Disease." As well as making some good observations about what is needed in the effort to address neglected diseases around the world, she also does a good job of acknowledging many things that biopharmaceutical research companies are already doing.
11.28.11 | By Kate Connors
Lately, Jen's been doing a great job of highlighting both the strong need for progress in the battle against Alzheimer's Disease and the hard work that is going into fighting that battle.
11.23.11 | By Kate Connors
With Thanksgiving on the horizon, your friendly Catalyst writers took a few minutes to jot down what they're thankful for this year...with a specific mandate to not talk about innovation or advocacy! Here are our answers - we'd love to see what you're thankful for in the comments section. Preet Bilinski: I'm thankful for the health and happiness of my family and friends... for having enough of everything I need... And especially thankful for a holiday focused on chowing down on good food.
11.22.11 | By Stien Vandierendonck

Below is a guest post from Stien Vandierendonck, from National Alliance for Caregiving. Established in 1996, the Alliance is a non-profit coalition of national organizations focusing on issues of family caregiving. Alliance members include grassroots organizations, professional associations, service organizations, disease-specific organizations, a government agency, and corporations.


A few days ago, I wrote about Sabina and Mark Shalom, a caregiver and Alzheimer's patient featured in our video about this devastating disease. Sabina, like the millions of other caregivers, has great hopes that one day there will be a treatment available that can help delay or prevent the onset of Alzheimer's.


I recommend taking a look at two interesting pieces that appeared in the press over the last couple of days.


The Catalyst has featured several posts about the counterfeit medicine threat and today I want to update you on the latest development.