PhRMA Clinical Trial Education Project Continues

PhRMA Clinical Trial Education Project Continues

09.05.12 | By

My first anniversary as a PhRMA road warrior traveling from state to state to help educate legislators, health policymakers, reporters and others about industry clinical trials of new medicines is rapidly approaching.

From Oregon to West Virginia to Illinois and beyond, I have met with reporters and participated in panel discussions, press conferences and traditional speaker forums to roll out "Research in Your Backyard" reports about new drug clinical trials being conducted in a dozen states. And the journey continues - I'll be in New York State and Tennessee next week and Iowa the week after that.

I've gotten in a lot of music over the last 10 months while driving from town to town, ranging from my blues, Southern rock and roll and progressive jazz CDs to the Grateful Dead Network on Sirius Radio. But, more importantly, a growing number of Americans has learned how clinical trials conducted in the states are beneficial to patients, local community economies and the advancement of science.

Take, for example, the information I'll be discussing in Tennessee over several days in Nashville, Memphis and other communities: More than 3,700 clinical trials of new medicines have been conducted in the Volunteer State alone since 1999, including 462 that are still recruiting patients, thus giving some chronic disease sufferers a potential new therapeutic option to discuss with their doctors.

And since biopharmaceutical companies often hire local research institutions to conduct the trials for them, the new drug tests are a revenue source and allow the state's medical schools, hospitals and special clinical research centers to be engaged in cutting-edge research.

The trials help to advance science since some of the drugs tested are new-generation biotechnology medicines, which might, in some cases, help to improve our ability to predict and even prevent disease.

We'll end 2012 in Louisiana, Washington State and Texas and the target list for next year is already being assembled. For me, a participant in this adventure, it has been an opportunity to help explain an industry that is so vitally important to not only patient health, but also local economic health.

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