Tag Archives: Public Health

Trump Administration Proposes 17.9% Cut to HHS Programs, Doubling of FDA User Fees

The Trump Administration is calling for deep cuts to Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) funding for fiscal year (FY) 2018 along with a $1 billion hike in Food and Drug Administration (FDA) user fees in its “budget blueprint,” dubbed “America First: A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again.”  The blueprint — which … Continue Reading

House Takes Early Action on Noncontroversial Public Health Bills

Early in the new Congress, the House of Representatives has approved, without objection, the following bipartisan public health bills: H.R. 309, the National Clinical Care Commission Act, to establish a National Clinical Care Commission to improve coordination of federal programs that support care for people with metabolic syndromes and related autoimmune disorders. H.R. 315, the … Continue Reading

CDC Issues Final Quarantine Rule to Strengthen Control of Communicable Diseases

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a final rule to strengthen the federal government’s ability to prevent the introduction, transmission, and spread of communicable diseases into the United States and interstate. The regulation is intended to both aid public health responses to outbreaks of new or re-emerging communicable diseases and provide due … Continue Reading

Public Health Bills Advance

On September 30, 2016, President Obama signed into law S 1878, the Advancing Hope Act, which modifies the FDA’s priority review voucher program for rare pediatric diseases and extends the program through December 31, 2016. In addition, the House has approved a number of health policy bills, including the following: HR 954, the “CO-OP Consumer … Continue Reading

Energy and Commerce Committee Clears Public Health Bills

On September 21, 2016, the House Energy and Commerce Committee unanimously approved the following public health bills: H.R. 4365, Protecting Patient Access to Emergency Medications Act – to amend the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) to enable paramedics and other emergency medical services (EMS) professionals to continue to administer controlled substances to patients under standing orders … Continue Reading

Congressional Health Policy Hearings, Markups Resume After Summer Break

Congress has returned from recess, and health care policy continues to be on the agenda. The following health-related hearings and markups were held this week: The House Ways and Means Committee approved H.R. 5942, a bill to establish a demonstration program to provide integrated care for Medicare beneficiaries with end-stage renal disease, and H.R. 954, … Continue Reading

Recent Congressional Health Policy Hearings and Markups

A number of Congressional committees have recently considered legislation and/or held hearings on various health policy proposals.  The Ways and Means Committee approved seven bills related to health care coverage and tax policy, including various bills to: expand access to health reimbursement arrangements and health savings accounts; ease employer insurance coverage mandates for students and … Continue Reading

House and Senate Pass Dueling Zika Funding Bills; House Bill Faces Veto Threat

On May 18, 2016, the House of Representatives approved H.R. 5243, the Zika Response Appropriations Act, by a vote of 241-184.  The bill would provide $622.1 million to the federal agencies to fight the Zika virus, offset by rescissions of existing funds (including unobligated resources left over from the 2014 Ebola outbreak).  According to the … Continue Reading

President Obama Signs Zika Priority Review, Controlled Substances Laws

President Obama has signed into law S. 2512, which adds  Zika virus to the Food and Drug Administration priority review voucher program to encourage the development of treatments for neglected tropical diseases. In addition, the President has signed S. 483, the “Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016.  This law amends the Controlled Substances … Continue Reading

Congressional Health Policy Hearings

The Senate Special Committee on Aging recently held a hearing on the status of efforts to find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease, and the panel plans an April 27, 2016 hearing to examine prescription drug price increases. In addition, the House Education and Workforce Subcommittee on Health plans an April 14 hearing entitled “Innovations in … Continue Reading

Recent Congressional Hearings on Health Policy Issues

A number of recent Congressional hearings have focused on health policy issues, including the following: A Senate Special Committee on Aging hearing titled “Sudden Price Spikes in Off-Patent Drugs: Perspectives from the Front Lines.”  A Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee hearing on “Opioid Abuse in America: Facing the Epidemic and Examining Solutions.” A … Continue Reading

Senate HELP Committee Approves Mental Health, Opioid Abuse, Drug Scheduling Legislation

On September 30, 2015, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee approved the following bipartisan legislation:  S. 799, the Protecting Our Infants Act (to combat the rise of prenatal opioid abuse and neonatal abstinence syndrome): S. 1893, the Mental Health Awareness and Improvement Act (to reauthorize and improve programs related to mental health … Continue Reading

Bipartisan Health Policy Bills Advance

On September 8, 2015, the House of Representatives approved the following bipartisan bills by voice vote:  H.R. 1344, the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Act of 2015 – to reauthorize a program for early detection, diagnosis and treatment regarding deaf and hard-of-hearing newborns, infants, and young children. H.R. 1725, the National All Schedules Prescription Electronic … Continue Reading

Congressional Health Policy Hearings

A House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight hearing recently reviewed the effects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on health insurance premiums.  In addition, a House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee hearing examined the Obama Administration’s approval of Medicaid demonstration projects.   The Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee also reviewed three bipartisan bills that aim to … Continue Reading

House Panel to Review Bipartisan Bills to Improve Health Care for Infants/Children

On June 25, 2015, the Energy & Commerce Health Subcommittee will review three bipartisan bills that aim to improve health care for newborns, infants, and children. Specifically, members will discuss: H.R. 2820, the Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Reauthorization Act, to reauthorize programs that promote bone marrow, adult stem cell, and cord blood donations, match donors … Continue Reading

Obama Administration Announces Plan to Combat Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria

On March 27, 2015, the Obama Administration released its National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria (NAP), a five-year, government-wide plan to address the spread of resistant bacteria. The main components of the strategy, which identifies roles for the public and private sectors, are as follows: Slow the emergence of resistant bacteria and prevent the … Continue Reading

Congressional Health Policy Hearings

Congressional committees have held several hearings this week on health policy issues. On March 24, the Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee held a hearing on the 340B drug pricing program. Also on March 24, the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight examined CMS’s use of the Fraud Prevention System (FPS) to identify and stop … Continue Reading

House Approves Medicare DMEPOS Competitive Bidding, Hospital Observation, Controlled Substances, & Trauma Care Bills

Yesterday the House of Representatives approved the following health policy bills: H.R. 284, the Medicare DMEPOS Competitive Bidding Improvement Act of 2015 – which would require Medicare suppliers that bid under a DME, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (DMEPOS) competitive bidding program to obtain a $50,000-$100,000 bid surety bond for each competitive bidding area (CBA).  If … Continue Reading
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