Universities Allied for Essential Medicines

Thanks to Cornyn and Lieberman for the FRPAA

Senator John Cornyn
517 Hart Senate Office Bldg.
Washington, DC 20510

Senator Joseph Lieberman
706 Hart Senate Office Bldg.
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senators,

The undersigned public interest organizations are writing to express their appreciation for your leadership in sponsoring the 2009 Federal Research Public Access Act (S.1373). This legislation would extend, improve and make more permanent an earlier open access initiative involving NIH funded research.

The new legislation would require that any federal agency with a budget or $100,000 or more for extramural research develop a policy on public access to publicly funded research. Among other things, the legislation would require government funded research papers to be made available in publicly accessible Internet archives within 6 months of publication in a peer reviewed journal, and would ensure the long-term preservation of, and free public access to, the published research finding in a stable digital repository.

The Internet now provides an unprecedented opportunity to amplify and disseminate the results of medical research by making it more widely and easily available than ever before. Improving access to scientific findings will help scientists build on research, accelerating innovation that provides treatments and cures, saving and improving countless lives.

Expanding access to medical research findings is not only important for physicians and scientists but also for patients and their families. Today there are too few medical papers available online including the majority of papers supported with taxpayer funding. Access to these peer-reviewed papers will be of great benefit to doctors and patients in informing treatment decisions.

Access to many scientific papers requires expensive subscriptions and many are never placed online. Congress must ensure that the public, having invested in science, gets access to publicly funded scientific publications and that research findings are easily available to scientists, medical researchers, physicians, students and patients.

As organizations concerned with public health, access to knowledge and a fair return on public investment in the creation of knowledge, we greatly appreciate your efforts on this issue, and encourage your continued diligence in working with the 111th Congress to take the next step and pass this important legislation.

We are pleased to be part of a broad coalition, including hundreds of consumers, academics, librarians, students and many other stakeholders that have expressed their support for the Public Access Act, in order to ensure barrier-free access to taxpayer-funded research (See coalition at:

If you have questions or would like to discuss this matter further, please contact Knowledge Ecology International at (202) 332 2670.

Knowledge Ecology International (KEI)
Contact: Manon Ress [manon.ress at]
IP Justice (IPJ)
Contact: Robin Gross [Robin at]
Essential Action
Contact: Rob Weissman [rob at]
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
Contact: Gwen Hinze [gwen at]
Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM)
Contact: Ethan Guillen [ethan.guillen at]
OXFAM America
Contact: Rohit Malpani [ rmalpani at]


September 16, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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