2023 Policy Priorities

The CBSA team leads policy efforts on behalf of the life sciences ecosystem and our members, who dedicate their careers to changing and saving lives with health innovations, products, and services.

We work to create a pro-innovation policy environment that enables the growth of the life sciences community and the development of breakthrough treatments and cures for patients.

State Policy Priorities

Protect Patient Access to Health Innovation

CBSA works to protect timely patient access to needed therapies and technologies. To support this priority, CBSA promotes policies that improve coverage and access to groundbreaking treatments by removing unnecessary coverage barriers and reducing delays to treatment.

Strengthen Incentives for Innovation

CBSA advocates for a public policy environment that strengthens incentives for innovation and offers predictability on the path from research to market. CBSA works to mitigate or defeat any new legislative or regulatory proposals that will impede research, place undue burdens on the industry, or create unintended consequences for our members.

Increase Capital and Growth

CBSA fosters the growth of successful access to capital programs, including the Advanced Industries Accelerator Grant Program, the Advanced Industry Investment Tax Credit, and the Advanced Industries Export Program. CBSA advocates to bring new life sciences investments to Colorado and explore new funding models that could attract additional public and private capital.

Promote a Favorable Tax and Regulatory Environment

CBSA advocates for proposals to strengthen the state’s tax and regulatory environment, which
is crucial to maintain and grow a competitive life sciences ecosystem. This includes efforts to
modernize the state’s economic development incentives and enact new tax policies to spur
company and capital formation.

CBSA also works to prevent erosive tax and regulatory measures that could make it harder to
expand current companies or attract new life sciences companies to Colorado.

Cultivate an Educated Workforce

CBSA supports workforce development initiatives to create a talent pipeline for the growing life sciences ecosystem. CBSA champions efforts to enhance Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education and encourages the development of educational pathways, internship programs, and other initiatives to grow Colorado’s life sciences workforce.

Promote Strategies to Improve Public Health

CBSA is committed to promoting strategies and public policies that improve public health and build healthier communities in Colorado. This includes advancing proposals to prevent disease, reduce health disparities, and foster equitable access to therapies and technologies.

Advance Ecosystem Priorities within the Colorado State Budget

In the 2023-24 fiscal year, the state will continue to make strategic investments to fund
essential programs and stimulate the economy. CBSA will advocate for funding for ecosystem
priorities, including the Advanced Industry Investment Tax Credit.

Federal Policy Priorities

Protect Patient Access to Health Innovation

CBSA works to protect timely patient access to needed therapies and technologies. The association supports reimbursement policies that facilitate patient access to the right therapy or treatment at the right time, including appropriate and inclusive coverage, coding, and payment for biopharmaceutical, medical device, and diagnostic products. 

Increase Research Funding

CBSA advocates for the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs and increased National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding and other federal research funding that fuels life sciences investment and innovation in Colorado and across the country.  

In FY 2022, Colorado received $525.3 million in grants and contracts from NIH, which directly supported important Colorado life sciences jobs and economic activity. Among those grants and contracts, Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) awards allow Colorado’s early-stage and startup companies to use federal research dollars to move ideas towards commercialization.  

The SBIR and STTR programs are critical sources of non-dilutive financing for early-stage life sciences companies in Colorado. The programs fund scientific excellence and technological innovation through the investment of federal research dollars in critical American priorities. They also contribute to a strong economy at the federal and state level. Most importantly, they advance breakthroughs that reinforce America’s global leadership in science and technology.  

The programs have had a significant impact on Colorado’s life sciences growth. Our state has received more than 6,035 awards totaling more than $2.76 billion dollars since the programs began.  

CBSA strongly advocated for the reauthorization of the SBIR and STTR Programs. CBSA celebrated a policy victory for Colorado’s life sciences community and America’s innovators, scientists, and entrepreneurs when Congress reauthorized critical SBIR/STTR programs. CBSA will continue to advocate for funding for these programs and increased funding for critical biodefense and pandemic research, development, manufacturing and procurement.  

CBSA advocates for increased funding for critical biodefense and pandemic research, development, manufacturing and procurement.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has emphasized the need to improve U.S. preparedness for emerging infectious diseases, including strong public-private partnerships and increased funding and support for the research and development of medical countermeasures that can detect, prevent or treat infectious diseases. CBSA advocates to bolster funding for pandemic research and preparedness, including funding for the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS), and the BioShield Special Reserve Fund (SRF). 

Improve the Regulatory Review and Approval Process

CBSA works to improve the drug and device review and approval process. The association supports policies that lead to greater consistency, predictability, and transparency in the FDA’s review programs and help to bring safe and effective innovative therapies and technologies to patients. CBSA is also committed to working with Congress, federal agencies, and stakeholders to develop a workable framework for the regulation of diagnostic tests that does not impede patient access or restrain innovation. 

Strengthen Incentives for Innovation

CBSA advocates for proposals that strengthen the incentives necessary to sustain innovation in the life sciences and create high-wage, high-value jobs.

Reflecting U.S. standards and laws in any new trade agreement for intellectual property rights and science-based regulation is incredibly important for Colorado companies. As the life sciences industry becomes increasingly global, it’s critical that we work to raise standards that will protect and foster innovation in foreign markets. CBSA supports efforts to secure trade agreements that commit our trading partners to 12 years of data exclusivity for biologics in line with U.S. law; enable harmonization in the regulation of biopharmaceuticals, devices, and diagnostics; and facilitate trade for innovative agricultural products.

The expanded international trade footprint of life sciences companies in Colorado is underscored by an invaluable reliance on the state’s advanced manufacturing capabilities. These capabilities ensure patients around the world have access to products and treatments that meet the highest standards of quality and safety. CBSA supports trade agreements and policies that are committed to the growth and sustainability of U.S based advanced manufacturing operations. 

Intellectual Property
Strong intellectual property protections are the foundation of the life sciences industry. IP is critical to ensuring a steady stream of capital for Colorado companies developing innovative medicines and technologies and is essential to the technology transfer process that leads from lab invention to commercial product. CBSA supports proposals to curb abusive patent practices, while strengthening the ability of patent owners to defend their inventions and businesses against infringement.

Promote the Development of Agricultural Biotechnology Products

CBSA advocates for policies that promote the development and commercialization of agricultural biotechnology products and communicate scientifically significant information to consumers about health, safety, and nutrition. 

Advance the Role of Digital Health Technologies in Improving Care

CBSA advocates for policies that advance the role of data and digital health technologies in improving patient care. The association supports regulatory and reimbursement policies that foster innovation and increase access to innovative digital health technologies, including clarity and transparency from the FDA and appropriate and inclusive coverage, coding, and reimbursement. Our digital health technology companies leverage health care data and technology innovation to draw new insights, improve patient experiences and outcomes, and increase the quality and efficiency of health care delivery. CBSA will continue working to create an environment that will advance their transformative technologies.