POLICY & ADVOCACY
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on our economy, society and way of life. As we look forward, there is strong bipartisan agreement to strengthen our defenses against existing and future health threats, which requires a concerted focus on being well prepared, applying what we’ve learned in recent months, to keep our country safe and healthy. Recently, we sent an open letter to President-elect Joe Biden urging him to build a National Pandemic Preparedness Strategy. Read the full letter here and learn more about our two core focus areas below.
ADDRESSING ANTIMICROBIAL RESISTANCE
New medicines to treat antimicrobial-resistant infections that are critical to our national health are in short supply. To address this crisis, we need to create a sustainable ecosystem and marketplace for antimicrobial R&D. And to achieve this, we must change the way antibiotics are prescribed, accessed, consumed, monitored and paid for. This will involve leadership and collaboration from private industry working alongside government and academia to focus on solving complex problems through a comprehensive set of policy solutions.
The shortage of new antimicrobial products has two main causes. First, development of new and novel products to treat AMR infections is very scientifically challenging and significantly risky. Second, the market for new antimicrobial products is not commercially sustainable.
To support the development of new antimicrobial products, policy makers must create strong financial incentives for investing in new treatments paired with policies that address stewardship and surveillance, stabilize the current market through payment and reimbursement reforms, and address barriers that prevent patients from getting access to the appropriate medicines.
Everyone can make a difference – from patients taking their full course of their medicines, to physicians using diagnostics and following clinical prescribing guidelines, to insurers providing access to clinically appropriate medicines without barriers, to policy makers helping to shape an environment that fuels development of new antimicrobial medicines.
Getting vaccinated is one of many important steps we each can take to protect ourselves and others from COVID-19, as well as help end the current pandemic. FDA scientists will determine if vaccines are safe and effective and for whom. Once vaccines are available, state and local health experts will determine where people can get vaccinated and how to prioritize access for people who want to be vaccinated.
COVID-19 VACCINE AWARENESS AND EDUCATION
You can learn more about your state’s vaccination plan and CDC’s guidance for states plans here.