Innovation—it is what everyone likes to talk about, but what does it really mean for millions of patients battling disease? Simply put, medical innovation can help patients live longer, healthier and more productive lives.
As one of the most research-intensive and science-driven industries in the U.S., the biopharmaceutical industry is committed to the research and development (R&D) of new treatments and cures for patients, including those who have serious unmet medical needs. With more than 5,000 innovative drugs in development worldwide by biopharmaceutical companies and over $500 billion invested in R&D since 2000, hope is certainly on the horizon.
Patients are not the only ones who benefit from new drug development. When new medicines keep patients healthier, the economy gets a boost from a healthier workforce, the cost of healthcare can go down and access improves. Perhaps above all else, medical advances give patients one essential ingredient for survival: hope.
Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies with a physical presence in New York State are currently developing more than 680 medicines and vaccines for several diseases, including many of the leading causes of disease death—heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes and pneumonia. These medicines are helping patients live longer, healthier lives. They are transforming many cancers into treatable conditions, reducing the impact of cardiovascular disease, offering new options for patients with hard-to-treat diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, and fighting even the rarest conditions.
New York is home to nearly one third of all active clinical trials conducted in the U.S. Scientists and researchers conducted 3,877 studies in New York last year in order to develop medicines targeting cancers, rare diseases and other important conditions. Nationally, U.S. researchers conducted 15,130 active trials in 2010.
Thanks to research and innovation in medicines, the life expectancy for men and women in the U.S. has increased by nearly a decade since 1950. In 1950, the life expectancy for men was 66 years and for women it was 71 years. By 2007, the life expectancy for men was up to 75 years and 80 years for women, and these numbers continue to rise.
According to an economic impact report conducted in 2013, the biopharmaceutical sector directly supported 55,564 jobs in New York in 2011. These jobs are often high-skill, high-wage professions. The industry also supported another 148,434 jobs outside the biopharmaceutical sector, for a total of 203,998 jobs. These additional jobs are with vendors and suppliers such as construction companies and IT companies, and jobs generated by the sector’s employees such as day care centers and restaurants.
Economic output represents the value of the goods and services produced by a sector. In 2011 the biopharmaceutical sector directly generated $25.7 billion in economic output in New York, and supported another $27 billion through its vendors and suppliers and through the economic activity of its workforce.
In New York, biopharmaceutical companies invested $2.1 billion in R&D in 2008. Nationally, biopharmaceutical companies invested approximately $51.0 billion in U.S. research and development in 2008, or $77,860 per direct employee.