Week in Review: Medical Innovation Through Public Policy

Week in Review: Medical Innovation Through Public Policy

02.22.13 | By Kaelan Hollon

It was a busy week for innovation - this week we discussed President Obama's initiative to advance medical research for neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. Collaboration among federal research institutions, academia, biopharmaceutical companies and patent companies make progress possible and reduce the number of lives impacted by brain diseases.

But good innovation - the kind that improves and even transforms patient's lives - is only possible through public policy that protects it. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement is a good example of international policy that can protect innovation and encourage medical research and development. With the next round of TTP negotiations in Singapore beginning March 4th, PhRMA Vice President of International Affairs Jay Taylor emphasized how important it is that this free trade agreement protect intellectual property and provide incentives for companies to develop new life-saving medicines.

Speaking at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce with Former Deputy U.S. Trade Representative John Veroneau and other experts, Taylor also noted that Canada's current intellectual property laws are not as strong as those in the U.S., which can put U.S. innovators at a disadvantage. The country, which is on the United States Trade Representative's Priority Watch List, does not adequately address patent, copyright, and trademark security.

Innovation isn't pulled from a magical hat - it has to be fostered, financed, encouraged, protected and advocated for in order for America to remain the world leader in medicine development. The alternative is for lifesaving medicines and their development to become adversely affected; a dire prospect, indeed.

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