COLUMBUS, Ohio, March 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- We Work for Health Ohio, a grassroots coalition formed to demonstrate the impact of Ohio's growing biopharmaceutical industry, its contributions to the state's economy and the health of Ohioans, was announced today.
We Work for Health – currently active in 15 other states, including neighboring Indiana and Pennsylvania – is a grassroots initiative that unites health consumers, biopharmaceutical company employees and retirees, vendors, suppliers and other business, academic and community partners to demonstrate how these diverse groups work together to improve Ohio's health care system and strengthen the state's economy.
"Here in Ohio, our coalition will highlight the important role that the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry plays to help energize our economy and create economic development opportunities for both small and large businesses," said Andrew Doehrel, President and CEO of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, who will co-chair the We Work for Health Ohio coalition. "As a vital economic partner, biopharmaceutical companies create and deliver significant benefits to their local communities by creating high-paying jobs, providing growth opportunities for related industries, fostering higher education in science and math and generating tax revenue."
"I am proud to serve as a co-chair of this organization along with the Ohio Chamber of Commerce," said Tony Dennis, President and CEO of BioOhio, who will also co-chair the effort. "Ohio is home to more than 1,350 bio-science related organizations that are a key economic driver for the state. We Work for Health Ohio provides a forum for a diverse group of coalition partners to advocate for this industry and its innovations and discoveries that improve the quality of life for individuals here in Ohio and beyond."
BioOhio and the Center for Economic Development at Cleveland State University conducted a study focused on bioscience business and research occurring in Ohio. Bioscience includes pharmaceuticals and therapeutics, medical device and equipment manufacturers, R&D facilities, medical laboratories, diagnostic imaging centers, agricultural feedstock and chemicals (agbio), and their respective infrastructures.
The study showed the industry provides 195,835 jobs to Ohioans and produces annual taxes of $3.242 billion.
Bioscience sector jobs paid an average wage of $68,384 in 2009, encompassing all bioscience subsectors and all occupations, not just scientists and executives. The average wage for bioscience industry employees in 2009 was 67% higher than the average wage for all industries in Ohio ($41,052).
The bioscience sector is relatively small compared to other sectors in Ohio, but it is continuously growing. By 2009 there were 1,345 bioscience firms operating 1,800 locations in Ohio, up from 1,115 firms operating 1,290 locations in 2000. Bioscience employment in Ohio has grown 19.5% since 2000, in contrast to a decline of 8.6% in total employment in Ohio
Initial members of the coalition include:
- The Ohio Chamber of Commerce
- NAACP (Columbus Chapter)
- Prevent Blindness Ohio
- Strategic Health Care
- Western Economic Council
- Hunger Network of Greater Cleveland
As the coalition continues to build, it plans to add additional members from the biopharmaceutical industry, health advocacy groups, and the business and academic communities throughout the state.
More information about We Work for Health in Ohio and nationally is available at www.weworkforhealth.org.
Contact: Toby Lichtle, 614-361-7908, [email protected]
SOURCE We Work for Health Ohio