Who We Are

The New Jersey Life Sciences Vendors Alliance (NJLSVA) is a coalition of businesses, individuals and academia who provide goods and services to New Jersey’s life sciences companies.

The NJLSVA was founded to educate suppliers on trends in industry procurement and public policy that affects the life sciences industry.

PhRMA CEO’s NJTV News Interview: Biopharma Is a ‘Very Vibrant’ Part of NJ Economy

Montclair, NJ, April 14, 2014 — In an interview on “NJTV News with Mike Schneider” broadcast on April 11, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) President and CEO John J. Castellani said New Jersey is the “medicine chest of America” with 70,000 direct employees in the biopharmaceutical industry. 

The rollout of the Affordable Care Act has been contentious throughout the country, particularly in the business community.  Castellani told NJTV News Managing Editor Mike Schneider that the new health care law has changed the way care is provided and has lowered premiums, but raised out-of-pocket expenses.

“There is a real political imperative to have a low premium,” Castellani explained.  “But to have a low premium, there are very large out-of-pocket expenses and first dollar expenses for patients. And so what we’re gonna have to watch very carefully is how that affects patients, particularly those with chronic diseases, and their ability to continue to afford their medicines.”

According to Castellani, employer-provided systems typically included out-of-pocket expenses between $1,000 and $1,500 before insurance covered most additional care. But with the new broadest plans, he said out-of-pocket expenses were approaching $6,000 and even the silver plans had out-of-pocket costs between $2,500 and $2,600.

“You think about particularly lower income patients who are now going to have to be paying much more money for needed medicines, particularly if you’re a diabetic or you have hypertension or other chronic diseases that need, obviously, day-to-day medication, day-to-day attention,” Castellani said.

Although there have been many changes in the health care industry, Castellani said New Jersey is the “medicine chest of America” with 70,000 direct employees in the biopharmaceutical industry.  “The companies that do the research and develop the medicines buy $8 billion a year in goods and services in the state.  So it is a very, very vibrant part of the state economy,” he said.

Other industries have moved away from doing business in New Jersey because of high taxes and the cost of living.  But Castellani said the Garden State provides what the health care industry needs.

“The industry goes where it has what it needs to be able to conduct the very extensive research that it conducts.  So first and foremost, you need a strong scientific ecosystem. And that ecosystem is not just the scientists that our companies employ in their labs. It’s the scientists that are associated with the colleges and universities, the hospital systems. And New Jersey has that ecosystem,” he said.

Having a large presence in New Jersey is good for the state, but also beneficial for patients, according to Castellani.  “It’s a great economic boon as well as a great benefit for patients.  Every other country in the world wants it,” he said.  “You see not only the great economic benefits, but obviously the great therapies.”

The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) represents the country’s leading innovative biopharmaceutical research and biotechnology companies, which are devoted to discovering and developing medicines that enable patients to live longer, healthier, and more productive lives.  Since 2000, PhRMA member companies have invested more than $550 billion in the search for new treatments and cures, including an estimated $51.1 billion in 2013 alone.

To view the interview, click here.