December 1, 2005

2 Min Read
Bill Would Restore Small Business Funding for Medtech Firms

Medtech manufacturers, industry associations, patient advocacy groups, and healthcare fundraising organizations are calling on Congress to pass the Save America's Biotechnology Innovative Research Act (SABIR), which would ensure the availability of small business innovation research (SBIR) grants to smaller, innovative companies that are often on the vanguard of new developments in medical technology and the life sciences.

Recent changes in the interpretation of SBIR eligibility requirements by the Small Business Administration (SBA; Washington, DC) prevents firms from participating in the program if they receive more than 51% of their funding in venture capital. SABIR would effectively nullify this provision and restore the previous funding eligibility criteria for SBIR grants, which are sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (Bethesda, MD).



Bond and Graves: Ensuring small business support.

SABIR, introduced in June, was cosponsored by Senator Kit Bond (R–MO) and Representative Sam Graves (R–MO). It has since been referred to the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, chaired by Olympia Snowe (R–ME), where it remained at press time.


BIO's Greenwood: Speaking for millions.

Last month, more than 60 organizations rallied in support of SABIR at a Capitol Hill news conference organized by the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO; Washington, DC). At the same time, the organization submitted a letter urging quick passage of the bill to Congress leaders. “This letter is the voice of millions of individuals facing devastating and chronic diseases whose best chances for new therapies are associated with the type of research that the SBA bureaucracy has blocked,” said Jim Greenwood, BIO's president and CEO.

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