The fight for faster cures in the 21st century will not only foster breakthrough medical innovations, make our health care system more efficient, and, most importantly, save lives—it will also help grow our economy. According to a recent Bureau of Economics Analysis, health care expenditures rose by 9.9% this year. This spike comes on the heels of the news that the U.S. gross domestic product grew only 0.1% in the first quarter of this year. We must do a better job of growing our economy—and that’s a big part of what we’re trying to accomplish with the recently unveiled committee initiative of a path to 21st century cures.
Recent analyses have shown that the cost of developing a new drug now exceeds $1 billion and takes upwards of 15 years from the initial molecular targeting to bring a drug to market. Are the economic incentives and policies currently in place sufficient to encourage robust investment and promote innovation? For decades, our nation’s commitment to the discovery, development, and delivery of new treatments and cures has made the U.S. the biomedical innovation capital of the world, bringing life-saving drugs and devices to patients and well over a million high-paying jobs to local communities.
The committee’s goal of accelerating the discovery, development, and delivery cycle can help save lives. It also happens to have the added bonus of helping our economy.