What do you do when the free market has no answer to urgent healthcare problems?
At nearly 1000 pages, the 21st Century Cures Act, which sailed into law on the back of cross party approval at the end of last year, was a weighty beast that potentially delivered something for everyone. From money to battle the opioid epidemic, to streamlined regulatory procedures for drug manufacturers; people across the sector stand to benefit from this ‘Christmas tree bill.’
For Nancy Goodman, the bill contained one key provision: a reauthorisation and expansion for the priority review voucher program, an incentive scheme to turn making drugs for conditions like malaria or childhood cancer from a high-risk, low-reward gamble, into a project that any company might undertake. In the latest episode of the Signal podcast, hosts Luke Timmerman and Meg Tirrell tell Nancy’s story, and how her worst nightmare spurred the creation of this innovative incentive system.
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