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WASHINGTON, DC (June 30, 1999) -- The American Hospital Association and the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) have signed a memorandum of understanding to work together to improve community health through biotechnology solutions.

"This agreement gives hospitals and health system leaders a way to invest in their future by forming partnerships with industry leaders in biotechnology who truly are on the cutting edge," said Jonathan T. Lord, M.D., AHA's chief operating officer. Since the AHA and BIO share the same vision of healthier communities, Lord continued, "That vision will move closer to reality through coordinated strategies to develop and deploy new biotechnology solutions, whether innovative new medicines and vaccines, diagnostic tools or even gene therapy. The impact on hospitals and the patients will be tremendous."

BIO President Carl B. Feldbaum said, "Biotechnology has revolutionized the practice of medicine and has become the centerpiece of therapy for all ailments, from heart disease and cancers to the common cold. Discoveries are made daily about strategies for treating the underlying causes of these conditions, and the health care professionals at hospitals are our partners, every step of the way, in bringing new therapies and cures to patients."

According to the MOU, the AHA and BIO will develop coordinated activities in at least four areas:

  • Cooperate on public policy initiatives and examination of ethical issues related to the development and deployment of new technologies and treatments.
  • Share information and knowledge through collaboration on educational programs, leadership meetings and media and print activities.
  • Enhance product development efforts for members and customers.
  • Look for ways to work together to support investment in future technologies that will impact health care.

The American Hospital Association is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which includes 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, and other providers of care, and 37,000 individuals. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends.

BIO is the world's largest biotechnology industry association, representing more than 850 companies, academic institutions and state biotechnology centers in 47 states and 26 nations. BIO members are involved in research and development of health care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.

For more information, visit the AHA and BIO web sites at www.aha.org and www.bio.org, respectively.

About BIO
BIO is the world's largest trade association representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIOtechNOW is BIO's blog chronicling “innovations transforming our world” and the BIO Newsletter is the organization’s bi-weekly email newsletter. Subscribe to the BIO Newsletter.