Washington, D.C. (February 17, 2009) — Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) President and CEO Billy Tauzin issued the following statement today regarding the economic stimulus package getting signed into law by President Obama:
"The economic stimulus package – now signed into law by President Obama – makes an important contribution to better health care for Americans. It will help workers who lose their job retain their health insurance and will allow states to sustain their Medicaid programs. These are the right steps during these challenging times.
"The new law also provides support for the important work of moving toward electronic health records, which offers promise as a tool to promote higher quality care, including enhanced prevention and management of costly chronic illnesses.
"In addition, the law provides over a billion dollars of government funding for comparative effectiveness research. Throughout the discussion of this issue in the stimulus bill, PhRMA maintained its long-standing support for increased government funding of constructive approaches to comparative effectiveness research.
"As the Administration begins to implement this new initiative, we expect it will be done with real transparency, openness, accountability and public input in how research priorities are set and how studies are ultimately communicated and conducted - key points highlighted in Senate discussion of the initiative.
"The law provides short-term funding for government comparative effectiveness studies. As recognized in Senators' statements, the important work of legislating a long-term policy framework for comparative effectiveness remains to be done. We look forward to working with the Administration as well as Sens. Conrad, Baucus and others in Congress as they construct a framework focused on improving health and assuring access to high quality medical care.
The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country’s leading pharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies, which are devoted to inventing medicines that allow patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives. PhRMA companies are leading the way in the search for new cures. PhRMA members alone invested an estimated $44.5 billion in 2007 in discovering and developing new medicines. Industry-wide research and investment reached a record $58.8 billion in 2007.
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