'Tis the season to take a step back from the year-end rush, reflect, give thanks, and think about where they can give back. #GivingTuesday gives us all a platform to come together and commit to a project or ideal that gives back to those in need this season. In medical research, philanthropic giving plays a critical and outsized role in speeding up the process of turning scientific discoveries into new medicines that can improve and save lives. Nonprofit disease research foundations are fast becoming the engine behind innovation in biomedical research.
There is no Nobel Prize for technology licensing or managing intellectual property (IP). The trip to Stockholm is usually reserved for discovery, the first leg in a long road to meaningful innovation. Managing IP is more like serving on a pit crew. Attention focuses on the essential functions when something goes wrong, and a good outcome is seamless and efficient—and therefore unsung.
Intellectual property (IP) negotiation can be arduous. Recognizing the drag and inefficiencies of these transactions is crucial to developing new approaches for IP that reduce unneeded delay in translating discoveries into drugs, vaccines, devices, diagnostics, or new services.
DARPA's Geoffrey Ling and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Shari Ling play important roles in the cure enterprise. Geoff leads some of the most innovative and disruptive programs that are saving and improving lives of wounded warriors. Shari supports CMS’ development and implementation of policies that are becoming the foundation of our nation’s care delivery infrastructure. And both continue to practice medicine. Hear about some of the toughest decisions they’ve had to make over their careers and how their interactions with patients shaped those decisions.
Do we have a surplus or deficit in our scientific workforce?
Increasingly, cures in biomedical research are only seen as possible through collaboration. It is critical to ensure that that the appropriate expertise and translational mindset are at the table during these collaborations – and proper training plays a big part. Academia plays the largest role in training scientists, but a subject of debate within the scientific community is whether academia is training too many scientists or too few scientists. These discussions were transported directly to Partnering for Cures as part of the session “The People Behind the Science: Will work for food.” The panelists represented different sources for funding research – government, academia, patient advocacy, and citizen crowd-funding – brought together in a conversation moderated by author, comedian, and researcher Adam Ruben.
Several factors have contributed to a state of flux for the current “value” environment in the U.S. healthcare system, including the emergence of accountable care organizations, cost versus value considerations, and sweeping changes in the landscape for reimbursement. Dean Rosen, partner at Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti Inc., opened the Partnering for Cures panel “Reimbursement: Can Value Drive Innovation” with an overview of these challenges and possible opportunities and then asked the panelists representing various stakeholders to offer their perspective.
by Melissa Stevens, Deputy Executive Director, FasterCures
Impact, impact, impact! Has the philanthropic world become obsessed with this word? How do we invest for impact in the complex world of medical research? I posed these questions as moderator of the 2013 Partnering for Cures panel “Philanthropy: Investing for Impact in the Search for Cures.” In this panel, four leaders from venture philanthropy organizations came together to discuss impact investing in medical research in the context of funding models, investment selection, and impact evaluation.