As America’s biopharmaceutical researchers continue working around the clock to fight COVID-19, leaders in the health care ecosystem have come together to provide recommendations to strengthen America’s preparedness and future health care crises response.
Utilizing lessons already learned from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and other major catastrophes, 100 organizations including PhRMA, engaged on the release of a new report. The report, issued by the Healthcare Leadership Council’s National Dialogue for Healthcare Innovation and the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy, brings together insights from companies and organizations representing every sector of American health care as well as health policy circles and involved participation from multiple government entities including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Homeland Security.
The report provides a comprehensive set of recommendations to improve the nation’s capabilities for disaster preparedness and response. The recommendations include:
- Creation by the White House of a standing disaster preparedness group that will include private sector expertise in areas such as production capacity, supply chain and distribution, and acute care delivery.
- Modernizing the health care supply chain through digitalization, automation, and predictive analytics, with standardized approaches for allocating resources based on need and equity to prevent bidding wars between states and healthcare providers.
- Improving supply chain resilience with strategic incentives such as zero percent loans, federally-guaranteed purchase commitments, and geographic diversification of production for critical medical products.
- Construction of a 21st century public health early warning system that will utilize all available electronic health records and public health data collection.
- Legislation and regulatory reform to create rapid response capabilities in areas such as medical licensure portability, telehealth accessibility, and swift access to PPE stockpiles.
- Creation of measures to ensure health equity and address disparities, identifying high-risk vulnerable populations and directing resources accordingly.
We want to make sure our country, and all of us, are stronger, healthier and better prepared for the next pandemic. As we seek to strengthen America’s preparedness, we believe it is critical to support increased resiliency in the supply chain for biopharmaceuticals and essential medical items including through the use of incentives and efforts to address key infrastructure needs.
Beyond the recommendations above, PhRMA also supports efforts to ensure that we are ready for future wide-reaching health threats, such as a superbug caused by drug-resistant bacteria. Addressing incentives to promote treatments for antimicrobial resistant bacteria will help America be ready to fight the next pandemic to come over the horizon.
That’s why our industry is taking action through the AMR Action Fund. This fund aims to bring two to four new antimicrobials to market by 2030, focusing on innovative medicines that address the highest priority public health needs. This industry-driven effort will also work to drive comprehensive policy reforms that are needed to advance new reimbursement methodologies and create incentives that enable appropriate patient access, creating a sustainable ecosystem for antimicrobial R&D and commercialization.
The fund will also provide technical support to emerging companies, giving them access to the deep expertise and resources of large biopharmaceutical companies to strengthen and accelerate the development of novel antimicrobial medicines.
As we look to the future, PhRMA and our members support bolstering pandemic preparedness and health care resiliency to make sure our country, and American patients, are stronger, healthier and better prepared for the next public health emergency.
Jocelyn Ulrich Jocelyn Ulrich, MPH, is Deputy Vice President, Policy and Research, at the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA). At PhRMA, she is responsible for developing legislative and policy analysis and research studies on a range of issues impacting innovative biopharmaceutical companies including intellectual property issues, FDA policy issues, the R&D process, the value of innovation, and other issue areas impacting the environment for innovation. In addition to her experience at PhRMA she has over 15 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry at Pfizer, Human Genome Sciences, and EMD Serono in roles in clinical research management, investigator-initiated and collaborative research, and global policy and corporate affairs. Jocelyn holds an MPH in global health policy and management from New York University.