MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- LifeScience Alley and CHI-California Healthcare Institute, in collaboration with the U.S. House of Representatives Medical Technology Caucus, will present a medical technology innovation 101 briefing on Feb. 9, 2011, in Washington, D.C. The briefing is intended to educate federal policymakers on the health and economic importance of the medical technology industry. Members of the U.S. House of Representatives have been invited to attend the briefing.
Rep. Erik Paulsen of Minnesota and Rep. Anna Eshoo of California, both co-chairs of the House Medical Technology Caucus, will be featured speakers during the briefing. Additional speakers representing industry include Dale Wahlstrom, president and CEO, LifeScience Alley; David Gollaher, Ph.D., president and CEO, CHI; Mark Deem, partner, The Foundry, LLC; Gary Lubben, vice president – physician-industry relations, Medtronic, Inc.; Jay Schnitzer, M.D., Ph.D., chief medical officer and senior vice president, Boston Scientific Corp. and Paul Wotton, president and CEO, Antares Pharmaceuticals.
Speakers will discuss the importance of the medical device industry to the United States, focusing on improvements in patient care, job creation, and supporting economic competitiveness. They will provide an overview of medical technology in Minnesota and California, and will host a panel discussion on the current state of medical technology innovation in the U.S. The briefing will also highlight challenges and opportunities faced by the medical technology sector, including uncertainty in regulatory pathways.
"We know that delegates representing states with a tradition in medical technology innovation are aware of the benefits to their states' economies, and the challenges industry is facing today," said Dale Wahlstrom, president and CEO of LifeScience Alley. "As the president and Congress focus on innovation and job creation, we are hoping to increase awareness of the benefits this vital industry sector brings to our citizens, the country and the world."
Medical technology represents $15 billion in economic impact to Minnesota. The state is home to major operations for Medtronic, Inc., St. Jude Medical, 3M, Boston Scientific Corp. and many other device makers. These companies employ approximately 35,000 individuals in high-paying jobs, while there are more than 83,000 more Minnesotans employed in support of the industry. Minnesota is an international leader in medical technology related to cardiac rhythm management.
In California, the medical device industry employs 107,000 people, more than any other state in the nation. More than 1,300 medical technology companies are located in the Golden State, the majority of which are companies with fewer than 50 employees. Most of these small companies rely on venture capital funding to support the research and development of biomedical innovations. California's medical technology industry, producing advanced products like coronary stents, implantable defibrillators, insulin pumps and molecular diagnostic tests, benefits millions of patients in the United States and around the world.
“It is essential for the continued growth of the medical technology industry that Congress identify and support policies to promote research, investment and innovation to grow our economy, create jobs and improve patient care,” Gollaher said. "This industry represents an area where the United States can sustain its competitive strength, given the right economic conditions and smart public policies.”
CHI represents more than 275 leading biotechnology, medical device, diagnostics, and pharmaceutical companies, and public and private academic biomedical research organizations. CHI’s mission is to advance responsible public policies that foster medical innovation and promote scientific discovery. CHI’s website is www.chi.org. Follow us on Twitter @calhealthcare and Facebook.
About LifeScience Alley
LifeScience Alley is an international leader in sharing best practices, and is the largest state-based life sciences trade association in the United States. With a 26-year track record of providing valuable services and results-oriented outcomes to its members, LifeScience Alley enables business success through educating workforces, influencing state and federal public policy, supporting advancement in research and technological innovation, and fostering industry connections. The Association’s membership employs approximately 250,000 Minnesotans and its reach extends throughout the Midwest and Canada.
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