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Richard Gephardt Joins Leading Innovators in Washington State to Call for Greater Focus on Policies to Boost Economy and Maintain U.S. Competitiveness in Medical Science and Innovation
Date:9/21/2009

SEATTLE, Sept. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Several of the Pacific Northwest's leaders in biotechnology, health and medicine gathered at the University of Washington Medicine's South Lake Union Campus today to discuss the importance of medical innovation in the region, and to the United States.

The Council for American Medical Innovation, a national coalition of leaders in research, medicine, public health, patient advocacy, academia, business and labor is calling on Congress to adopt a national policy agenda aimed at preserving U.S. leadership in medical innovation. The Council hosted the event. Richard Gephardt, former Democratic Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives and chair of the Council for American Medical Innovation, moderated the forum, highlighting the contributions innovators in the state of Washington have made to public health and economic security. Panelists suggested that new discoveries in the life sciences and medicine are critical to region's economic recovery.

"Medical innovation has an enormous impact on the health and economy of the United States, and is a growing part of the economy in the state of Washington," Gephardt said. "When we find ways to support medical innovation, we create jobs, drive investment and improve our health. While America still leads the world in science and technology, other countries are gaining on us at amazing speeds. We need to act now by laying a strong foundation with intelligent policies that will preserve our leadership in medical innovation and allow science and medical discovery to flourish today, tomorrow, and into the future."

Biotechnology, including biopharmaceutical companies, directly employs nearly 20,000 people in Washington, representing a payroll of more than $1.6 billion. The Pacific Northwest has unique advantages in medicine, the life sciences and other innovative fields that can be har
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SOURCE The Council for American Medical Innovation
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