Sen. Sanders Introduces Medical Innovation Prize Fund Act

On March 2, 2017, Senator Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., introduced the Medical Innovation Prize Fund Act (S. 495), which would create an over $100 billion prize fund (set at 0.55-percent of the United States GDP) to reward medical innovation in lieu of the grant of monopolies on new drugs. This bill, which is substantively similar to various bills that Sen. Sanders has introduced over the years, including in 2011, provides that the prize fund would be administered by an independent body comprising government officials and various stakeholders (private and non-profit R&D entities, health insurance companies, consumers and patients, and employers). The fund would pay out prizes for new innovations based on various criteria, including the size of the patient population and the health benefits of the drug, and also reward open source biomedical research that contributes to drugs and interim R&D.

The full text of the bill is available via the United States Congress.