July 10, 2014, Arlington, Va.— Leading up to two congressional hearings this week on an initiative to fast-track the discovery, development and delivery process of new drug treatments for patients, the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) expressed its support for the 21st Century Cures Initiative.
Launched by House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) and committee member Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), the 21st Century Cures Initiative seeks to harness the power of technology and bring together researchers, innovators and patients in order to understand diseases better and advance research that will lead toward cures.
The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health will hold two hearings this week to gain input from stakeholders on their initiative.
NACDS recently expressed its support in a letter to Reps. Upton and DeGette, citing pharmacy’s leading role in expanding patient access to care and treatment.
“Community pharmacy’s potential key role in delivering new drug treatments is highlighted by the fact that pharmacies are best known for their commitment to medication safety and effectiveness — providing accurate prescriptions, helping patients take medications as prescribed and safely, and advising patients on potential drug interactions,” NACDS said in its letter to the lawmakers.
“Within the context of the 21st Century Cures Initiative, community pharmacy’s value is amplified through the growing efforts of the industry to provide health education and disease state testing and management. Through personal interactions with patients and face-to-face consultations, pharmacies are helping to shape the healthcare delivery system of tomorrow — in partnership with doctors, nurses and others,” NACDS continued in its letter.
The 21st Century Cures Initiative includes collaboration broadly with the National Institutes of Health, the Food and Drug Administration and other agencies, as well as patients and leading-edge scientific researchers. Lawmakers are hopeful that the multi-year effort will accelerate medical advancements and make the predominant diseases of today a thing of the past.
“In light of chain pharmacies’ leadership in community healthcare, our primary role in delivering new drug treatments, and commitment to safety and effectiveness, we look forward to helping you develop policy and legislative ideas to ensure success of the 21st Century Cures Initiative,” NACDS concluded in its letter.