Los Angeles has Hollywood. Northern California has Silicon Valley. Michigan has autos. New York has publishing and skyscrapers. But it’s New Jersey that’s known as the Medicine Chest of the World.
How did New Jersey get this nickname and maintain it over the years?
There are a lot of destinations and wonderful states in America, but it’s The Garden State that’s managed to be nicknamed and honored with such a good and important nickname, for New Jersey doesn’t only practice medicine—it lives it.
While there are an unlimited amount of reasons and numbers that support New Jersey’s glorious nickname, we’ll start with this…
Life sciences play a major factor
Life sciences can be described as such (via Merriam-Webster): “a branch of science (such as biology, medicine, and sometimes anthropology or sociology) that deals with living organisms and life processes.”
Life sciences, to say the least, plays a major role in New Jersey’s world-class nickname.
Via the HealthCare Institute of New Jersey:
“According to New Jersey’s Department of Labor and Workforce Development, the state has more than 3,000 life sciences establishments, which include biopharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device and diagnostic companies.
“Of those, 13 of the world’s top 20 biopharmaceutical companies (based on sales) and 12 of the world’s top 20 medical technology companies make the Garden State their global, North American or U.S. headquarters or have significant investments here.”
Even more, “New Jersey’s economy is 89% more concentrated in the biosciences than the national average and is the only state where this high degree of specialization spans four of the five major industry subsectors—drugs and pharmaceuticals; research, testing, and medical labs; bioscience-related distribution; and medical devices” (according to Choose New Jersey).
The above statistics show how strong of a hold New Jersey has on this field and how deserving the state is of its nickname. It’s the leader in this field and it shows in the numbers.
New Jersey is life sciences and this spans to innovation and education.
Innovation and education
When you have the resources and funds that New Jersey has for life sciences, innovation is possible, encouraged, and competition is fierce (but in a good way).
Just like Northern California’s Silicon Valley is always trying to come out with the next best app, startup, or tech creation, New Jersey is always trying to do the same thing and further development and innovation when it comes to life sciences as a whole.
As an example, “In 2017, 23 new FDA drug approvals came from companies with a New Jersey footprint, that’s 50% of all FDA drug approvals. Of the top 22 R&D companies, 12 are located here” (via Choose New Jersey).
The above statistic shows that NJ isn’t only practicing life sciences and teaching it at some of the best schools in the country (more from that later) but it’s also releasing new product in the field to the tune of 50 percent of what’s being FDA approved everywhere, not just in New Jersey.
In terms of higher education, which helps to mold bright minds and further research and study, New Jersey is home to Princeton, Rutgers, The College of New Jersey, Monmouth, and many other top-notch universities. In fact, Princeton and Rutgers are some of the nation’s top research institutions. And, to add accomplishment to achievement, Princeton is ranked No. 1 in “National Universities” according to U.S. News & World Report.
It’s no wonder New Jersey is flooding in innovation in this field as a result of being supported by some of the best research institutions and also churning out innovative products.
Job prospects and patient access
What this has all led to? A boom in job prospects and patient access in New Jersey.
From neurosurgical offices in New Jersey to urgent care in Wall Township, NJ to radiology in Annadale, NJ, there are plenty of jobs in the medical field being offered in New Jersey, which also means there are plenty of services and medical professionals for a world of medical needs for people living in and around the area. Research and innovation is one thing when it comes to putting NJ on the map, but the job outlook and medical and health access to professionals and patients are what solidify New Jersey as the Medicine Chest of the World.
According to Choose New Jersey, NJ has 225,000 scientists and engineers, which is the world’s highest concentration. Playing off of that point, NJ is ranked No. 1 among all 50 states in employed biochemists and biophysicists. To really bring the point home and also show off the higher education system in the life sciences arena, New Jersey sees 27,000 life sciences graduates on a yearly basis.
High quality of life
On top of the advances New Jersey is making in the medical field, the state has a high quality of life, which makes living there a desire for all, not just professionals and students in the field.
According to Forbes, New Jersey comes in at No. 6 in quality of life among the states. There are many factors that help to decide that, such as education, opportunity, crime and corrections, etc.
For all it’s worth, there’s plenty of attractions in NJ and it’s in close proximity to New York, which isn’t only a benefit when being close to financial institutions (for the possible support of further innovation) but a blessing in the entertainment department as well since New York City is one of the most popular cities in the world. After all, New York brings a lot to the table, from Times Square to Wall Street to the Statue of Liberty.
Being the Medicine Chest of the World, a place has to have a plethora of jobs, innovation, patient access, and other factors relating to life sciences, and New Jersey checks every box. Jobs can be found in spades with the correct life sciences degree, from lice treatment services in New Jersey to audiologist in West Orange, NJ to modern dental care in Jersey City, NJ. As a result, saying you’re one of these professionals in the state of New Jersey (and anywhere, for that matter) holds a lot of weight. People move to this state for these types of jobs, let alone the high quality of living.
New Jersey is a health information exchange organization in the sense that it offers so much in the health and medicine departments, from research to jobs to innovation to patient access to, well, everything relating to life sciences.
Given all of the information above, it’s no wonder New Jersey is coined the Medicine Chest of the World, and that won’t be changing anytime soon.
BioNJ puts it best:
“Put it all together — a critical mass of industry presence, an educated and highly trained workforce, an active and supportive state government, an unsurpassed network of service providers, Wall Street across the river, the FDA and the NIH a brief train ride away, access to venture capital and angel funding, an international and local transit system that is second to none, the desirable Eastern Standard Time Zone for doing business with California and the UK in the same business day — and you have the ideal climate for building a biotech business.”