Week in Review: The Latest from PhRMA

Priscilla VanderVeer   |     May 22, 2015   |   SHARE THIS

High Out-of-Pocket Costs Hurt Patients: Even with health coverage, approximately 31 million Americans were considered “underinsured” last year due to high deductibles and increasing out-of-pocket costs, according to a new survey from the Commonwealth Fund. The study found that those with low incomes and/or health problems were at the greatest risk of being underinsured. Read more in a Catalyst post about the survey and check out AccessBetterCoverage.org for information on choosing a plan to meet your needs.

week-in-reviewAdvancing Personalized Medicine: In 2014, 20 percent of the medicines approved by the FDA were personalized. Just one year later, personalized medicines represent 42 percent of treatments in the R&D pipeline. A new study from the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development found there has been considerable progress in bringing precision treatments to patients and biopharmaceutical companies are expected to increase their investment by an additional one-third over the next five years.

Honest Abe Weighs in on Patents: Abraham Lincoln sang the praises of the patent system and now, more than ever before, these intellectual property protections are critical. A new study from Boston University and the Analysis Group found patents to be more important to incentivizing innovation in the biopharmaceutical sector compared to other industries. Patents: More Important to Biopharmaceutical Sector than Other Industries explores reasons why patents are so essential to developing new medicines.

#MedicareMonday and Non-Interference: #MedicareMonday this week touched on the fact that competition and the current negotiation structure in Part D are essential to the program’s success. The non-interference clause is integral to keeping costs low for beneficiaries and tax-payers alike. The latest post explains why proposals to repeal non-interference are short-sighted. Take a look here and let us know what you think in the comments.

Conversations: To recognize National Nurses Week, John Castellani asked respondents how they celebrated the important role nurses play in health care. Margaret Barton-Burke of the Oncology Nursing Society honored the contributions of nurses past, present and future, and Sonia Valdez of the National Hispanic Nurses Association highlighted the important role nurses play in educating patients. PhRMA’s own Sharon Brigner noted she’s found a rewarding career advocating for patients at the bedside and at the policy table. Share how you celebrated National Nurses Week using #HealthPOV.

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Priscilla VanderVeer

Priscilla VanderVeer Priscilla VanderVeer Priscilla VanderVeer is a vice president, public affairs, at PhRMA. Ms. VanderVeer has more than 15 years of experience communicating important health care issues to a wide variety of audiences, including medical, health and patient advocates; policymakers and opinion-leaders; and the general public. At PhRMA, Ms. VanderVeer leads the development and execution of communications strategies and activities for the organization’s key state advocacy priorities. She lives in Annapolis, Maryland with her husband, Ken and their two dogs: Bea Arthur, a tiny 5 lb. Maltese and Henry, a slightly larger-than-average Yorkshire Terrier.

Topics: Personalized Medicine, Patents, Intellectual Property, Medicare

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