GIPC 2024 Patient Access Report
Vice President, Patents and Innovation Policy, Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC), U.S. Chamber of Commerce
January 31, 2024
Today, patients in the United States have greater access to the latest lifesaving and life-altering medical treatments than anywhere else. However, the nation’s ability to access the latest healthcare innovations in the future is uncertain.
Behind the scenes, unelected bureaucrats in Washington are pushing for greater control over the medicines Americans can access by imposing unprecedented price controls.
These changes threaten access to the vital lifesaving treatments patients need today and the breakthrough discoveries that you or a loved one suffering from a debilitating disease might count on tomorrow.
Historic Data Uncovers Alarming Impact of Price Controls
- Less access and delayed care: In 2023, the first edition of the U.S. Chamber's Patient Access Report revealed how foreign governments who impose similar price controls caused reduced access to new medicines and longer treatment wait times, sometimes exceeding 500 days. Sometimes, patients with severe conditions had to wait over 16 months for treatment.
- ‘Research deserts’ for medicine: Another study shows how the government's price controls pose a severe threat to the U.S. clinical trial research vital to discovering new treatments for diseases like cancer, Alzheimer's, obesity, and heart disease. Data suggests a potential 75% cut in some areas of privately funded medical and clinical research funding.
New Findings Expose Growing Threats for American Patients
In 2024, the second edition of the Patient Access Report paints a grim scenario where new medicines become scarce, and patients endure long wait times with limited options—an outcome no one should support.
- U.S. medicine launches may drop by 44%: Due to the government's price controls, the United States faces a potential 29% to 44% drop in new medicines. Other research from Vital Transformation suggests a 40% drop in FDA approvals over a decade, and a University of Chicago study estimated an 18.5% reduction in U.S. life sciences research and development spending.
- The U.S. has benefited from a decade of leadership in medical innovation and access: From 2012 to 2021, 85% of new medicines entered the American market. The U.S. led in accessing new medicines, measured by an objective tool called the Patient Access Matrix, akin to a report card for therapy access. Germany, the closest competitor, had only 61% introduced locally. Meanwhile, countries like Canada, Spain, Australia, and South Korea fell further behind, with less than half of the new medicines available.
- Price controls shift the U.S. from leader to middle of the pack: However, things will change due to new price controls and potential property seizures via march-in rights. The analysis now projects that the U.S. ranking will decline to reflect those of countries like the European Union member states, Australia, and Canada, known for extended patient wait times.
Patients and innovators alike should be alarmed about the impact of the government's march for price controls. In the face of these challenges, the future of access to vital treatments in the United States is uncertain. We must act now to protect patients' access to lifesaving medicines and support continued medical progress.
To learn more, download the full report.
GIPC 2024 Patient Access Report
About the authors
Brad Watts is the Vice President for Patents and Innovation Policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC). He works with U.S. Chamber members to foster a political, legal, and economic environment where innovators and creators can invest in the next big thing for the benefit of Americans and the world.