BIO Names Sen. Orrin Hatch a Legislator of the Year

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 9, 2003) – As part of its annual Legislative Day event, the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) today named Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, as their 2002-2003 “Legislator of the Year.”

“BIO salutes congressional leaders such as Senator Hatch who see biotechnology’s potential, especially in stem cell research and development,” said BIO President Carl B. Feldbaum. “BIO commends his stalwart support for therapeutic cloning legislation and championing an orphan drug tax credit bill.”

“Furthermore, Senator Hatch’s work on Medicare reform, prescription drug coverage and the Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System will help to ensure that innovative biotechnology medicines will be available to those patients who need them most.

“BIO also thanks Senator Hatch for his staunch support for homeland security legislation containing the necessary liability measures to ensure that biotechnology companies can contribute fully to our nation’s defenses,” Feldbaum added.

More than 175 biotechnology industry representatives ranging from CEOs to research scientists are expected to convene on Capitol Hill during the BIO Legislative Day event to meet with legislators. The topics of discussion will include reimbursement problems within the Medicare hospital outpatient setting, tax and capital formation, Medicare reform, regulatory concerns surrounding follow-on biologics and reducing trade barriers for American farmers.

BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.