Public Policy

Mankind's need to cure disease, combat hunger and discover new forms of energy has never been more urgent.

BIOtechNOW’s Tracy Cooley talks to Dr. Schubert of the  Bioscience Association of West Virginia about biotech in West Virginia – major areas of growth, the outlook for growth of the industry within the states, and plans for the upcoming  BIO International Convention.

BIO and five member companies – Mendel Biotechnology, Arborgen, Abengoa Bioenergy, Novozymes and BP Biofuels – along with the Biomass Power Association held a briefing on Capitol Hill this week, outlining the importance of the USDA’s Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) and related programs. Regulatory rules for the BCAP, Biorefinery Assistance Program, and Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) were finalized by USDA only during the last quarter of 2010. But Congress is considering cutting the funds for these programs before they have a chance to show their effectiveness.

To carry out military and humanitarian missions around the world, U.S. forces require reliable fuel supplies and secure supply lines. At the micro level, the military is as much at the mercy of high oil and gasoline prices as the average consumer. In addition, when you calculate the fully burdened cost of fuels, for instance a gallon of jet fuel delivered to the front lines in Afghanistan, it can be upwards of $400 per gallon. And, on a macro level, oil often comes from regions of the world that are not U.S. military allies. The need for great energy independence is therefore a very important national security issue.

Tracy Cooley talks to Renee Winsky about biotech in Maryland and the upcoming  BIO International Convention  in Washington, DC.

All programs at the BIO World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioprocessing are open to attendance by members of the media. Complimentary media registration is available to editors and reporters with valid press credentials working full time for print, broadcast or web publications.

Despite the fact that U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack believes that the regulation of genetically engineered agricultural products must be science-based, and that he has “no doubts about the safety of the products this system has approved and will continue to approve,” some state legislatures are considering bills requiring labeling for biotech-derived food. These bills defy existing science-based regulation and are wholly unnecessary.

BIO released a white paper on the growth and jobs potential of green chemicals.

The advanced biofuel industry can reduce reliance on oil and create green jobs; diverse federal programs are necessary to help producers secure financing for construction of projects. The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) today joined 34 other companies and trade associations to ask leaders of the House Ways and Means Committee to include the language of H.R. 5142, the Grow a Renewable Energy Economy Now – Jumpstart Other Biofuels (GREEN JOB) Act of 2010, in the next appropriate revenue vehicle considered by the House.

The federal Renewable Fuel Standard provides the stable policy essential to attracting private investment to the development of advanced biofuels. The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) today joined the Advanced BioFuel Association, the Renewable Fuel Association, the Advanced Ethanol Council and the American Coalition for Ethanol in a letter to leaders of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works urging protection of the federal RFS.

Scientific American will release the third annual Worldview: A Global Biotechnology Perspective at this year's BIO International Convention.

BIO is committed to increased access to biologic medicines for patients throughout the world. 

Emerging biotech companies with promising scientific innovation need a policy environment that will enable them to continue critical research and development of medical advancements and breakthroughs.

March 27 2014
February 25, 2013     Marilyn Tavenner, B.S.N., M.H.A. Administrator Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Room 445–G, Hubert H. Humphrey Building 200 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20201   Re: Draft 2015 Letter to Issuers on Federally-facilitated Marketplaces   Dear Ms. Tavenner:             The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) is pleased to submit the following comments on the draft letter related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) health insurance Marketplaces that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued on February 4, 2014, entitled “Draft 2015 Letter to Issuers on Federally-facilitated Marketplaces” (the “Draft Letter”).[1]             BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers, and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO's members develop medical products and technologies to treat patients afflicted with serious diseases, to delay the onset of these diseases, or to prevent them in the first place. In that way, our members’ novel therapeutics, vaccines, and diagnostics not only have improved health outcomes, including productivity and quality of life, but also have reduced health care expenditures due to fewer physician office visits, hospitalizations, and surgical interventions. [1] Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Draft 2015 Letter to Issuers in the Federally-facilitated Marketplaces (FFM) (Feb. 4, 2014). Available at: http://www.cms.gov/CCIIO/Resources/Regulations-and-Guidance/Downloads/draft-issuer-letter-2-4-2014.pdf (hereinafter “Draft Letter to Issuers”).   
March 27 2014
VIA ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION   March 1, 2014     Patrick Conway, M.D. Deputy Administrator for Innovation and Quality Chief Medical Officer Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation 7500 Security Boulevard Baltimore, MD 21244   RE: Request for Information: Evolution of ACO Initiatives at CMS   Dear Dr. Conway:   The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) is pleased to submit the following comments regarding the Request for Information (RFI) on the “Evolution of ACO Initiatives at CMS” released by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) on December 20, 2013.[1]  BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers, and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations.  BIO’s members develop medical products and technologies to treat patients afflicted with serious diseases, to delay the onset of these diseases, or to prevent them in the first place.  In that way, our members’ novel therapeutics, vaccines, and diagnostics not only have improved health outcomes, but also have reduced healthcare expenditures due to fewer physician office visits, hospitalizations, and surgical interventions. [1]           Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, Request for Information: Evolution of ACO Initiatives at CMS (Dec. 20, 2013), available at: http://innovation.cms.gov/Files/x/Pioneer-RFI.pdf.   
November 6 2013
On behalf of the BIO and its 1,100 members, I am writing in strong support of your Start-up Jobs and Innovation Act. I want to thank you for introducing this important legislation, which will spur investment in small biotech companies and other innovative businesses.
July 10 2013
Therapeutic biologics are an opportunity to address unmet patient needs, drive innovation, and assist China's transformation into a knowledge-intensive economy.
July 10 2013
A healthy public market is key to the success of the biotech industry, as growing innovators often turn to an IPO to fund late-stage clinical trials.
April 10 2014
BIO and Delaware Bio commend the Delaware State Senate for unanimously passing legislation yesterday designed to create a pathway for the substitution of interchangeable biologic medicines. 
March 5 2014
Many of the provisions included in this budget proposal would jeopardize the continued biotech research and development that is necessary to find cures and breakthrough medicines for patients living with debilitating and life-threatening diseases. 
January 30 2014
Patients Should Be Informed if Doctor's Prescription Changed
January 14 2014
Spending plan would enable the FDA to access $85 million in sequestered user fees
November 18 2013
BIO commends the Senate for approving H.R. 3204, the Drug Quality and Security Act.