House Energy And Commerce Committee To Consider Public Health Bills; 21st Century Cures Draft Legislation Expected Soon
On Tuesday, January 27, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health will take its first look at public health legislation for the 114th Congress. Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA) has announced that the Subcommittee will examine the following pieces of legislation: the Ensuring Patient Access to Effective Drug Enforcement Act; the Improving Regulatory Transparency for New Medical Therapies Act; the Veteran Emergency Medical Technician Support Act; the Trauma Systems and Regionalization of Emergency Care Reauthorization Act; a bill to reauthorize language from the Public Health Service Act to fund trauma care centers; and the National All Schedules Prescription Electronic Reporting (NASPER) Reauthorization Act.
House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) has stated that 21st Century Cures draft legislation, an initiative spearheaded by Chairman Upton and Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), will be released in “the coming days.” The initiative was formed “to take a comprehensive look at what steps we can take to accelerate the pace of cures in America” and has received support from members on both sides of the aisle, as well as from industry stakeholders. Some speculate that President Barack Obama’s State of the Union comments on precision medicine may also indicate the Administration’s support for the initiative. Many observers expect the legislation will largely focus on drug product approval and medical research. A bipartisan group of House lawmakers previously released a discussion draft on telemedicine issues, which may be incorporated into the larger Cures package under consideration.
Senate HELP Committee To Hold Organizational Meeting
On Wednesday, January 28, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) will meet in executive session to consider authorization of committee expenditures for this Congress; committee rules of procedure; subcommittee assignments; the reauthorization of S. 192, the Older Americans Act of 1965; S. ____, the Strengthening Education Through Research Act; and any pending nominations.
This Week’s Hearings:
- Tuesday, January 27: The House Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Health will hold a hearing titled “Examining Public Health Legislation to Help Patients and Local Communities.”
- Wednesday, January 28: The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, Subcommittee on Health will hold a hearing titled “Examining the Quality and Cost of VA Health Care.”
- Thursday, January 29: The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) will hold a hearing titled “Employer Wellness Programs: Better Health Outcomes and Lower Costs.”