Posts Tagged ‘Merck’

Authors of Landmark Study on Economic Benefits of Advanced Medical Care for At-Risk Newborns Receive Garfield Economic Impact Award

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

WASHINGTON—December 8, 2011—The authors of a groundbreaking study on the economic benefits of advanced medical care for at-risk newborns today received the 2011 Garfield Economic Impact Award. Douglas Almond; Joseph J. Doyle, Jr.; Amanda E. Kowalski; and Heidi Williams are being honored for their paper titled “Estimating Marginal Returns to Medical Care: Evidence from At-Risk Newborns.” The award, presented by Research!America, recognizes the outstanding work of economists who demonstrate how medical and health research impacts the economy. The award is supported by a grant from Merck & Co., Inc.

The study, published in The Quarterly Journal of Economics, shows that advanced medical care enables very low birth weight babies to “beat the odds” and survive at greater rates than would be expected based on birth weight alone.

The cost of medical treatments for at-risk newborns has increased considerably in recent years. In the U.S., preterm and low-birth weight diagnoses accounted for 8% of newborn admissions but 47% of costs for all infant hospitalizations, according to the paper. Using hospital discharge records for births in five states from 1991 to 2006, the authors found that newborns with birth weights just below 1,500 grams often have higher charges and more frequent medical interventions than babies at slightly higher weights. The authors found that when an intensive level of care was applied, very low birth weight babies defied expectation by surviving at greater rates than the higher birth weight babies. Despite the need for highly intensive care, the cost of saving the life of a newborn with birth weight near 1,500 grams is well below most value of life estimates.

Research!America’s chair, former Congressman John Edward Porter (R-IL), said, “The study demonstrates the net positive economic impact of advanced medical care for a highly vulnerable population. We applaud the winners for contributing policy-relevant evidence on the value of such care.”

“Though we have focused on the impact of medical care for at-risk newborns, we hope that our methodology will also shed light on the impact of medical care for other populations,” said Kowalski on behalf of the award recipients.

The 2011 Garfield Award was presented at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, DC. The ceremony was followed by a panel discussion featuring award winner Amanda Kowalski, assistant professor of economics, Economics Department, Yale University; Alan Guttmacher, the director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child and Human Development; Tomas Philipson, a past winner of the Garfield Award and the Daniel Levin Professor of Public Policy Studies at the University of Chicago; and Billie Short, chief of neonatology at Children’s National Medical Center. Al Hunt, executive editor for Bloomberg News in Washington, DC, and the host of Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” moderated the discussion.

Mary Woolley, president and CEO of Research!America, said, “We are extremely pleased with the extraordinary work of these economists in analyzing the return on investment with advanced medical care for at-risk newborns. Their research underscores the cost savings associated with evidence-based, cutting-edge treatment.”

About the 2011 Recipients

Douglas Almond is an associate professor, Department of Economics and School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University. Amanda E. Kowalski is an assistant professor of economics, Economics Department, Yale University. Joseph E. Doyle Jr. is an associate professor of economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management. Heidi Williams is an assistant professor, Department of Economics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

About Research!America

Research!America is the nation’s largest nonprofit public education and advocacy alliance working to make research to improve health a higher national priority. Founded in 1989, Research!America is supported by member organizations that represent the voices of 125 million Americans. Visit www.researchamerica.org. For more information on the Garfield Award, visit www.researchamerica.org/economicimpact_award.

C-PATH to Host “Creating Consensus Science”

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

The Critical Path Institute (C-PATH), in conjunction with the Food and Drug Administration and the Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium (CDISC), will hold a two-day event focusing on the innovative tools that push drug development toward greater efficacy and lesser risk.

“Creating Consensus Science: New Tools and Tactics for Next-Gen Drug Development” will be held November 30 and December 1 at the Crowne Plaza Silver Spring in Silver Spring, MD.

FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, MD, and Kathy Hudson, PhD, deputy director for science, outreach and policy at the National Institutes of Health, are the keynote speakers.

Other session chairs and panelists include former Sen. Bob Bennett (R-UT); John Castellani of PhRMA; Brian Corrigan, PhD, of Pfizer; Tim Cote, MD, MPH, of the National Organization for Rare Diseases; Jan Gheuens, MD, PhD, of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Clarice “Risa” Hayes, PhD, of Eli Lilly and Co.; Garry Neil, MD, Gary Romano, MD, PhD, and Mahesh Samtani, PhD, of Johnson & Johnson; Ronald Perrone, MD, of Tufts University; Frank Sistare, PhD, of Merck; Myrl Weinberg of the National Health Council; Janet Woodcock, MD, director of FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research; and Raymond Woosley, MD, PhD, of C-PATH.

Read more about the event or click here to register.

Research!America hosts New Jersey Salon Dinner

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

As part of a series of dinners on specific U.S. states’ roles in the global health R&D enterprise, Research!America held a salon dinner featuring New Jersey in Washington, D.C. last week.

A small group of senior U.S. officials, global health experts and representatives from some of New Jersey’s large pharmaceutical companies discussed the challenges and opportunities of global health R&D for New Jersey, a $60 billion industry that is essential for economic and job growth in the state.

“New Jersey is the Silicon Valley of global health research and development,” Jeffrey Sturchio, PhD, a former Merck executive and the current CEO of Global Health Council, said.

Dinner participant Dona DeLeon, director of Gov. Chris Christie’s D.C. office, pointed out that in a tough economic climate, governors around the country are scrambling to meet budget shortfalls and to keep businesses from moving away. Still, she realizes the value of health R&D.

“In our state, the governor is very well acquainted with [the pharmaceutical] industry. It’s very well known that this industry is really an engine that drives our state,” DeLeon said.

The state is well positioned to be a leader in global health R&D, with 17 of the world’s 20 largest pharmaceuticals, medical technology and diagnostic companies either based or located in the state.

Research!America’s efforts have resonated with the New Jersey federal delegation. Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ) recently quoted Research!America health and economic impact data on the House floor, highlighting the importance of health R&D as an economic driver for the state (video here).

“New Jersey is the third largest R&D employer in the U.S., with more than 211,000 jobs supported by health R&D, including 50,000 direct jobs,” Rep. Pallone pointed out.

Please visit http://www.researchamerica.org/gh_new_jersey to access our New Jersey Economic Impact Fact Sheet, public opinion poll results and related media.

To access recent and similar efforts in Illinois, please visit http://www.researchamerica.org/gh_Illinois. To learn more about Research!America’s state-based global health R&D advocacy program visit http://www.researchamerica.org/global_health.

Merck & Co., Inc. and the Global Health Council are Research!America members.

Economist Honored for Study on Impact of New Cancer Drugs on Life Expectancy

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

WASHINGTON—December 2, 2010—The 2010 Garfield Economic Impact Award was presented today to Frank R. Lichtenberg, PhD, of Columbia Business School. Research!America has presented this award since 2002, to recognize the outstanding work of economists who demonstrate how medical and health research impacts the economy. The award is supported by a grant from Merck & Co., Inc., and by the Eugene Garfield Foundation.

The 2010 award recognizes a study by Lichtenberg, published in the journal Economics of Innovation and New Technology. The study shows that new cancer drugs from 1968 to 2004 increased the life expectancy of American cancer patients by almost one year and that the cost of this additional year is less than $7,000 per patient, much lower than previous estimates of what Americans are willing to pay for an additional year of life.

“Greater life expectancy is the most important benefit that patients, and scientists, want to obtain from a new drug for cancer,” said Lichtenberg. “That benefit, net of the drug’s cost, represents the real value of cancer drug research investment.”

Research!America’s chair, former Congressman John Edward Porter (R-IL), said, “I congratulate Professor Lichtenberg on his outstanding work. He, like previous Garfield recipients, is building a base of evidence about the economic value of medical research and helping to measure the nation’s return on our investment in medical and health research.”

The 2010 Garfield Award was presented at the Hart Senate Office Building in Washington, DC, by Porter and Eugene Garfield, PhD, founding editor and president of The Scientist, and founding benefactor of the award. The ceremony was followed by a panel discussion featuring Lichtenberg; John Seffrin, PhD, CEO of the American Cancer Society; and former Garfield recipient Sherry Glied, PhD, assistant secretary for planning and evaluation at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. David Leonhardt, “Economic Scene” columnist for The New York Times, moderated the discussion. Senator Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) was the honorary congressional host.

Mary Woolley, president and CEO of Research!America, said, “We are pleased to honor Professor Lichtenberg, an exemplary economist whose pioneering work is advancing the field of economics and the understanding of the impact of medical research on the economy. I encourage other economists to follow his example and explore this very important but under-developed field.”

About the 2010 Recipient

Lichtenberg is the Courtney C. Brown Professor of Business at Columbia Business School, Columbia University. His research has examined how the introduction of new technology arising from research and development affects the productivity of companies, industries and nations. He previously taught at Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania and has worked for U.S. government agencies, including the Department of Justice and Congressional Budget Office. His articles have been published in numerous scholarly journals and general news outlets.

About Columbia Business School

Led by Dean R. Glenn Hubbard, the Russell L. Carson Professor of Finance and Economics, Columbia Business School is at the forefront of management education for a rapidly changing world. The school’s cutting-edge curriculum bridges academic theory and practice, equipping students with an entrepreneurial mindset to recognize and capture opportunity in a competitive business environment. For more information, visit www.gsb.columbia.edu.

About Research!America

Research!America is the nation’s largest nonprofit public education and advocacy alliance working to make research to improve health a higher national priority. Founded in 1989, Research!America is supported by member organizations that represent the voices of 125 million Americans. Visit www.researchamerica.org. For more information on the Garfield Award, visit www.researchamerica.org/economicimpact_award.

This press release is available at: www.researchamerica.org/release_10dec2_garfield.

Former CDC Director Named President of Merck Vaccines

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009

Julie Gerberding, MD, MPH, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2002 to 2009, will become the new president of Merck’s global vaccine division. Merck is a Research!America member. The Star-Ledger has more:

She will be responsible for the commercialization of the current portfolio of vaccines, which includes Zostavax for protection against shingles and Gardasil for prevention against human papillomavirus. She will also plan for the introduction of vaccines from the company’s pipeline and accelerating its efforts to broaden access to the developing world.