The COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic is reminding all of us how much health matters in our families, our communities and our nation. The Association for Accessible Medicines is committed to the secure and consistent supply of critical pharmaceuticals that support good health and the recharging of the U.S. economy.
The generic drug industry already contributes to a robust and reliable supply chain, manufacturing more than 70 billion doses of prescription medicines1 in the United States annually. AAM’s Blueprint for Enhancing the Security of the U.S. Pharmaceutical Supply Chain lays out a detailed plan for further strengthening this public health and economic asset.
The blueprint presents policy solutions that enable the pharmaceutical industry to expand its investments and economic footprint throughout the United States, while ensuring that, for those medicines most essential to our country’s health and security, foreign sources will not dominate the supply chain. To realize this objective, the U.S. government and Congress must create the conditions that support and encourage this investment.
The following incentives are central to the Blueprint’s execution:
- Long-term price and volume guaranteed contracts
- Grants to support construction, alteration, or renovation of facilities
- Tax deductions and credits to offset the cost of supply chain enhancements
- Streamlined regulatory review of manufacturing sites
The United States cannot, nor should it, produce all the medicines for America’s patients. Our health care system is most secure when we rely on a globally diverse supply chain. To reach this end, the U.S. Trade Representative should negotiate a plurilateral agreement with U.S. allies to promote a cooperative approach to securing the supply chain.
In order to safely and responsibly accomplish the goal of strengthening the generic drug supply chain, the blueprint needs to be executed in a deliberate manner. Modern pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities can take 5-7 years and cost up to $1 billion to build. A long-term, consistent commitment by Congress and the White House is critical to ensure national and health security through an expanded generic manufacturing base in the United States.
By Jonathan Kimball, AAM Vice President, Trade and International Affairs
1. Based on a 2016 survey of Association for Accessible Medicines’ member companies.