Thursday, April 9, 2009

Bioscience’s innovation improves life, bolsters economy in Ohio

By Anthony J. Dennis, PhD
While our state works through a deep and difficult economic crisis, there remains hope on the horizon.
Ohio’s bioscience industry, which includes pharmaceutical companies, medical device manufacturers and world-class researchers and developers, drives the forward-looking innovation that contributes so much to our economy and helps improve our daily lives.
At a time when jobs are easy to lose and difficult to find, we can’t forsake the enormous influence bioscience has on our economy and the promise it holds for Ohio’s future. Gov. Ted Strickland has identified bioscience as one of the areas that can create jobs and encourage innovation in a climate where both commodities are rare and fragile.
Did you know that the total economic impact of bioscience on Ohio in 2007 was $148.2 billion? The overall industry directly and indirectly generates more the 1.4 million jobs in Ohio.
Bioscience, medical technology, and research organizations continue to thrive in Ohio. As of December 2008, 1,141 bioscience-related entities were operating in the state. Bioscience-related entities include those involved in research, development, and marketing of pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, bioinformatics, medical devices, medical equipment, biotechnology products, and health-related products. From 2004 to 2007, an average of 66 new companies began operation in Ohio each year. And between 2005 and 2007, 100 bioscience-related companies either expanded operations or announced new facilities in Ohio.
Very simply, bioscience creates jobs, generates tax revenue and supports economic development for Ohio.
Bioscience’s value to Ohio’s economy is further supported by its relative low impact on health-care costs. For example, it may be surprising to learn that prescription drugs, which are a large part of the bioscience field, represents less than 10 percent of total health-care spending. In addition, the growth of the pharmaceutical industry is at its lowest point in almost 50 years, which has harmed the development of new drugs for the treatment of many dangerous diseases, according to a report compiled by IMS Health, a biotechnology industry analyst.
The application of bioscience also mitigates other costs related to the health-care industry. For example, prescription drugs not only help maintain a patient’s health, but they dramatically reduce the need for additional health-care costs such as surgeries, hospital stays and emergency room visits. President Barack Obama’s healthcare adviser, David Cutler, estimated that taking medication to treat hypertension reduces the number of heart attacks by 25 percent each year.
These are just a few examples of bioscience’s positive impact on our state. In a time when we are all looking to save money and capitalize on legitimate financial opportunities, bioscience is leading the way with the innovation to support the economy while improving our lives.
Anthony J. Dennis, Ph.D., a microbiologist, entrepreneur, technology advocate and native Ohioan, is president & CEO of BioOhio, which is a non-profit organization designed to build and accelerate bioscience industry, research and education in Ohio.


Blogger jodyNcolumbus said...

I attended the #BioOhio Advocacy day at the Statehouse on Tues April 7. I have not done a full blog post, but my tweets are here:

April 9, 2009 at 2:53 PM  

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