JP Morgan Healthcare Conference Innovators: How Should We Measure Getting Closer to a Cure?

The annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, the largest and most informative healthcare investment symposium in the industry, bringing together industry leaders, emerging fast-growth companies, innovative technology creators, and members of the investment community kicked off this week in San Francisco marking its 35th year. And when we see over 450 private and public companies along with 9000+ investors present innovative ideas that surface, one must wonder – why can’t the world find more cures for its diseases?

Ever since I was in high school I have been on asthma maintenance medications to keep this 6’-4” frame moving on the tennis court. At age 47, I am in excellent health but I wonder why I still need to take steroids to comfortably breathe. If I miss a dose of my Advair, it’s hard for me to even scale 10 steps to go to sleep at night. In this day and age, with all the money dedicated to R&D driven by the top scientific minds in the world, working daily in the labs and with patients to measure their improvements, we have got to find a better way to start benchmarking future cures to diseases like asthma. 

Perhaps drug companies can communicate with patients and the general public in an equally innovative way…by providing what I’ll call the Closer-To-A-Cure (CTAC) Index that indicates how much closer we’re getting as a society towards cures to cancers, respiratory diseases, you name it. Such an approach would put the trust back into big pharma companies and government agencies that oversee which drugs make it to market. While there are plenty of websites that the general public can access, one has to dig deep to find such reports that show that we’re getting closer to a cure-all society. Shouldn’t this be the goal for all of these companies? Please send your comments to We want to hear your thoughts and start a healthcare communications movement in the right direction!