Because Patients Can’t Wait®

BioNJ’s mission is to bolster medical innovation and New Jersey’s life sciences ecosystem. The discovery and development of new therapies and cures allow Patients to live longer, healthier, more productive lives – benefiting the entire healthcare system, New Jersey’s economy and society as a whole. BioNJ advocates on behalf of our Members to ensure that government continues to invest in the research and development of future medical innovation and that medicines are accessible to Patients in need. We are actively engaged with Patients and Patient advocacy organizations, so that the voice of the Patient and their family has an even stronger presence and greater impact in our community.

The medical innovation being developed by our companies is drastically improving the way health care is delivered by saving lives and reducing costly institutional care, physician visits and invasive medical procedures.

  • Oncology – U.S. cancer survivors have more than doubled to 14.5 million since 1990.
  • Hepatitis C – A once incurable disease now has cure rates above 90%.
  • HIV/AIDS – Once a death sentence, it’s now a chronic manageable condition.
  • Childhood Cancer – 83% of children with cancer now survive, compared to 58% in 1970.
  • Vaccines – More than 730,000 children’s lives have been saved in the last 20 years in the United States because of advances in vaccines.

But a threat is looming. Patients and innovation itself may be endangered by the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) and other organizations that use questionable, one-size-fits-all methods to determine drug value and access. Join BioNJ in our efforts to advocate for policies and solutions that help Patients access the medicines they need and promote a thriving life sciences industry in New Jersey and beyond.

Why Patients and Medical Innovation May Be Under Threat?

In an effort to control the cost of care, health plans and policymakers are actively exploring the use of drug value assessments to determine whether or not a certain treatment should be covered. Health plans use value assessments – sometimes called “cost-effectiveness” reviews – to assess whether a drug’s price is justified by how effectively it treats a condition or disease. Payers use that information to decide if a new treatment will be covered for Patients.

What is ICER?

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) is a Boston-based research group that uses a controversial method to determine the value of drugs. ICER uses the “Quality Adjusted Life Years” methodology to determine treatment value, which is based on an arbitrary evaluation of the value of one year of perfect health. ICER ignores individual Patient preferences in its reviews. And the ICER approach to drug value assessment may be discriminatory, as it places a lower value on the lives of the disabled, the elderly and Patients with a rare disease.

What ICER Means for Patients

If ICER reviews are adopted more widely, it could deny Patients access to new and life-savings drugs. It would allow ICER – rather than physicians – to make treatment decisions for patients. One estimate found that, if Medicare used an ICER-style model, 59 to 93 percent of prescriptions to treat complex conditions may not be covered. When Patients can’t access the treatments they need, it can lead to complications, increased doctor visits, trips to the ER, and even death.

What incentive would life sciences companies have to innovate if the drugs they produce can’t reach the Patients who need them? ICER could bring innovation to a halt.

DOWNLOAD the BioNJ Protecting Medical Innovation from ICER Infographic
DOWNLOAD Our One-Page Handout on ICER



Why Are Patients Facing Higher Costs When They Go to the Pharmacy?

“Understanding Your Drug Costs: Follow the Pill” Video


Patient Protections: Ensuring Patient Access & Medical Innovation
What You Need to Know About the Importance of Biopharmaceutical Patents

Intellectual property (IP) protections on medical products exist to give Patients in New Jersey and beyond confidence that they will receive treatments backed by rigorous safety and efficacy standards while ensuring that biopharmaceutical manufacturers can continue to develop innovative therapies for complex and rare diseases. More…


A Primer on the Value of Medical Innovation and Drug Pricing

DOWNLOAD the drug pricing plan.

How You Can Take Action

Because Patients Can’t Wait®, any solution to control health care costs in New Jersey must promote innovation, incorporate the unique needs of Patients, and ensure access to care. Join us in our efforts to protect medical innovation and access to life-changing treatments for New Jerseyans and all Americans. Sign up and we’ll send you email opportunities to take action online and in your community. Click here to sign up.