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Congress

May 24, 2019 | Daily News

The Federal Trade Commission said on Thursday (May 23) that while brand and generic drug makers settled patent disputes more often in fiscal year 2016 than prior years, only one of the agreements met the Supreme Court’s criteria of potentially being anticompetitive.

May 24, 2019 | Daily News

FDA’s drug center would receive an approximate $50 million increase in budget authority over fiscal 2019 levels under the 2020 funding bill passed by the House Appropriations agriculture subcommittee on Thursday (May 23), according to a preliminary analysis by the Alliance for a Stronger FDA.

May 24, 2019 | Daily News

The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids on Thursday (May 23) urged Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to remove from his bill, which raises the minimum purchase age of tobacco from 18 to 21, a provision that would require each state to individually pass laws raising the minimum age.

May 24, 2019 | Daily News

A draft legislative package released by Senate health committee leaders Thursday (May 23) would require plans to have up-to-date provider directories, available online or within 24 hours of an inquiry, but Medicare Advantage (MA) plans would not be included in that policy, according to the office of Chair Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

In a quick turn of events, the focus of drug-pricing legislation in the House shifted from Medicare negotiation to Part D reinsurance reform, which also is the approach that is being considered in the Senate.

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

A bipartisan group of House lawmakers, led by emergency room physician Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-CA), unveiled Thursday (May 23) an outline of legislation that would hold patients harmless from surprise bills and allow providers and issuers to resolve payment disputes through arbitration.

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

The House Appropriations agriculture subcommittee on Thursday (May 23) voted to send a fiscal 2020 funding bill that would give FDA a $184 million increase over its fiscal 2019 levels to the full committee.

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

The Senate health committee’s bipartisan legislative proposal would hold patients harmless for surprise bills and lays out three possible reimbursement options for those situations: benchmark rates that are similar to the House Energy & Commerce Committee’s solution; an “in-network guarantee” that is supported by employers; and an arbitration option, which hospitals and providers have backed.

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

The Democratic sponsors of bipartisan Tobacco to 21 legislation in the Senate are urging Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to sign on as a co-sponsor rather than move forward with his recently introduced bill that also would raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco from 18 to 21.

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

The Senate health committee’s bipartisan draft bill on lowering health care costs does not expand the Trump administration’s point-of-sale rebate proposal to the commercial market, after Chair Lamar Alexander (R-TN) said the proposal was being considered for inclusion.

May 23, 2019 | Daily News

Senate health committee leaders released a draft legislative package Thursday (May 23) that would set up an information exchange program for commercial insurers similar to CMS’ Blue Button initiative, strengthen incentives to improve cybersecurity practices, require a study of third-party health apps, and increase cost transparency, among other proposals to lower health care costs.

May 22, 2019 | Daily News

Senate Finance Committee Chair Chuck Grassley said Wednesday (May 17) that committee members are considering a rework of financial liability in the catastrophic phase of Medicare Part D to help curb rising drug prices.

May 22, 2019 | Daily News

After legislative talks between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and President Donald Trump ground to a halt Wednesday morning, Senate Finance Chair Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who is helping lead negotiations on health care policy, said the Senate was always in the driver’s seat in the drug-pricing debate.

May 22, 2019 | Daily News

Lawmakers stuck to partisan lines as they debated the tradeoffs of a single-payer health care system during a House Budget Committee hearing, with Republicans focusing on how a transition to the system could disrupt American health policy and Democrats highlighting the potential positive outcomes.

May 22, 2019 | Daily News

President Donald Trump said Wednesday (May 22) that legislative negotiations on drug pricing are on hold until Democrats stop investigations into his potential role in his campaign’s ties to Russia and into other actions he has taken while in office.

May 21, 2019 | Daily News

Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) said he has been pushing Senate Finance Chair Chuck Grassley to embrace a Medicare drug price negotiation scheme that includes a formulary designed to make it easier for patients and their doctors to bypass coverage restrictions.

May 21, 2019 | Daily News

A coalition of provider and patient groups are urging CMS to rethink its plan to include noninvasive ventilators in the durable medical equipment competitive bidding program, as DME suppliers simultaneously are gathering support for a congressional sign-on letter with the same request.

May 21, 2019 | Daily News

House Ways & Means Committee leaders are asking in letters sent Tuesday (May 21) that HHS Secretary Alex Azar provide them with a full review of his department’s programs that combat maternal mortality and for a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on maternal mortality data.

May 20, 2019 | Daily News

Several lobbyists on Monday suggested the Senate health committee could unveil a discussion draft of policy proposals to lower health care costs as soon as Thursday (May 23).

May 20, 2019 | Daily News

Families USA, in a move reminiscent of the run-up to the Affordable Care Act debate, is spearheading a new alliance of beneficiary advocates, employers, unions and primary care doctors who say they are willing to rethink traditional partnerships to tackle fundamental problems with the nation’s health system by changing economic incentives.

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