HIV/AIDS Reports Show Innovation Continuing

HIV/AIDS Reports Show Innovation Continuing

11.29.12 | By John Castellani

We have been tackling the misfortune and suffering caused by HIV/AIDS now for more than 30 years. While great progress has been made in the treatment and prevention of HIV, and many patients now have access to medicines that help them live with and manage the disease, the biopharmaceutical research sector recognizes that much more still needs to be done.

Today, PhRMA released two new reports about innovation for HIV/AIDS patients. The first, the latest installment of our Medicines in Development series, reveals that more than 70 medicines and vaccines to treat HIV/AIDS are now in the pipeline. The second paper, sponsored by PhRMA and developed by Boston Healthcare Associates (BHA), captures the evolution of HIV/AIDS treatments from the 1980s to today and details how an acute fatal disease has been transformed into a chronic, manageable condition for many patients, especially in the U.S.

Of particular note, the BHA paper highlights how this progress was incremental in nature - both in terms of our knowledge of the disease and in the development of increasingly effective treatment regimens. This is not unique to HIV/AIDS, as the true value of each success (or setback) along the innovation continuum often isn't fully realized until many years later.

As I look ahead to World AIDS Day this Saturday, I am proud that PhRMA member companies have been at the forefront of these dramatic results. And according to the 2012 ATM Index released yesterday, our companies are doing more and more to improve access in the developing world.

All this is possible because of our companies' continuing commitment to finding new and better solutions for patients - and the existence of policies that encourage innovation. But for progress against HIV/AIDS - and other difficult diseases and conditions - to continue, we must ensure that the U.S. maintains and pursues policies that stimulate medical innovation. Patients here at home and around the world depend on it.

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