October 12, 2010

$139 Billion Dollars Invested in Health Research

(Ivanhoe Newswire) "“ The U.S. invested $139 billion dollars in health research from all public and private sources in 2009. The U.S. is always trying to remain in the lead for health research and findings, although the recent recession inhibited the funds slightly, the funds are slowly back on the rise. The $139 billion dollars only represented 5.6% of the $2.47 trillion overall U.S. health spending in 2009.

The 2009 investment grew by only 0.1% since 2008. This small increase can be attributed largely to the federal stimulus funding for research provided through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Federal research investment was nearly $46.8 billion in 2009, up from $38.6 billion in 2008.

"America's economic destiny lies in innovation, but other countries are stepping up, investing more and thus challenging our lead," former Congressman, John Edward Porter, Research!America's chair was quoted as saying. "We need to invest in our federal research agencies for the long term. Our economic competitiveness and our future standard of living depend on it."

The effects of the economic recession can be seen throughout the other sectors that fund health research and development"”industry, universities, state and local governments, philanthropic foundations, voluntary health associations, and independent research institutes"”where such investment remained basically the same or declined in 2009. Industry was the largest source of health research funding in 2009 at $74.3 billion, down slightly from the prior year's $74.8 billion. All other sources combined invested $17.8 billion, compared with $17.1 billion in 2008.

"We need to make the research and development tax credit permanent as an incentive to the private research enterprise, which builds upon the essential work of our federal research agencies," Mary Woolley, president and CEO of Research!America, was quoted as saying. "We need this and other incentives and investments to support the full pipeline of research, so research can get the job done and deliver on its promise of treating, curing and preventing disease, as well as raising health care quality and lowering cost."

SOURCE: Research!America, published online October 11, 2010