Klobuchar says Minn. 'well positioned' for health grantsby Rupa Shenoy, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar says Minnesota is in a good position to compete for government grants as health reform moves forward.
Klobuchar said that's because the state is a national leader in containing costs while improving quality of care.
Klobuchar will address the impact of health reform on Minnesota's health care industry during an opening speech at the LifeScience Alley conference in St Louis Park.
She said Minnesota's medical device makers need a faster approval process from federal regulators so the industry can respond as markets grow quickly in the U.S. and abroad.
"As people in countries like China and India finally get health care and go to the doctor they're going to start having a need for hip replacements and other medical devices," Klobuchar said. "So we are really well-position to supply med devices to not only our country but to the world and we want to make sure we continue to have that competitive strength."
Klobuchar said she's worried delays at the FDA will slow down Minnesota med-tech companies trying to respond to rapid growth in global health care markets.
"Right now it goes more quickly to get products approved in Europe in a lot of instances and we want to try to overhaul some of our FDA processes," she said.
She said they still have safety as their chief concern, but they work more efficiently and she's concerned a lot of investment money is going to go to Europe.
Klobuchar said she'll work to give Minnesota's health care companies and hospitals a seat at the table as health care policies are crafted in the next few years.