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Congress

September 20, 2019 | Daily News

The House Energy & Commerce Committee’s surprise billing fix would save $21.9 billion over the course of 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

September 20, 2019 | Daily News

A Senate Finance Committee task force charged with looking at six expiring health taxes, including the Affordable Care Act’s taxes on medical devices and health insurers, failed to reach a consensus on next steps in a newly issued report.

September 20, 2019 | Daily News

Senate appropriators call on FDA to take additional steps to address vaping-related illnesses in the fiscal 2020 FDA funding bill and accompanying report they marked up Thursday (Sept.19).

September 19, 2019 | Daily News

The Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday (Sept. 19) passed a bill that would give FDA an $80 million funding boost in fiscal 2020, with substantial investments in the agency’s medical countermeasures initiatives, pathogen reduction efforts, compounding oversight, food safety and outbreak prevention, cannabidiol activities and infrastructure maintenance.

September 19, 2019 | Daily News

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on Thursday (Sept. 19) unveiled her long-awaited government price negotiation plan, which would give HHS the power to negotiate drug prices that would apply to all payers.

September 18, 2019 | Daily News

A package of so-called health extenders was tucked into the continuing resolution introduced in the House late Wednesday (Sept. 18) to avert a government shutdown Oct. 1.

September 18, 2019 | Daily News

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) will release a bill Thursday (Sept. 19) that directs Medicare to negotiate prices for at least 25 drugs, and up to 250 drugs, according to lawmakers who have been briefed on the bill.

September 18, 2019 | Daily News

House Education & Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) said that his committee is sorting out technical issues to ensure its surprise billing fix applies to ERISA as well as all other forms of health coverage, and that the committee is also stuck on whether to use a benchmark payment rate or arbitration as the policy fix.

September 18, 2019 | Daily News

Senate Appropriations health subcommittee Chair Roy Blunt (R-MO) released a fiscal 2020 HHS funding bill on Wednesday (Sept. 18) that would extend some health programs set to expire on Sept. 30 for an additional year, despite work done by the House Energy & Commerce Committee and the Senate health committee this summer to extend these programs for a longer period of time.

September 18, 2019 | Daily News

The American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) wants Congress to provide FDA an extra $316 million to support regulatory science initiatives for medical products, specifically cancer therapies.

September 17, 2019 | Daily News

HHS’ Office of Civil Rights (OCR) is looking into using its authority under HIPAA to tackle concerns over surprise billing and discussed the idea with a group of insurance industry stakeholders on Tuesday, according to a source who attended the meeting.

September 17, 2019 | Daily News

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is expected to release her long-awaited government drug price negotiation plan on Wednesday (Sept. 18).

September 17, 2019 | Daily News

The Senate Appropriations agriculture subcommittee passed a fiscal 2020 funding bill Tuesday (Sept. 17) that would give FDA an $80 million increase over fiscal 2019 levels, with substantial investments in the agency’s medical countermeasures initiatives, pathogen reduction efforts, compounding oversight, food safety and outbreak prevention, cannabidiol activities and infrastructure maintenance.

September 16, 2019 | Daily News

The Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic demonstration program lost its funding Friday (Sept. 13) for the second time this year after a short-term extension lapsed, threatening access to medication-assisted treatment and the jobs of those who work at these clinics, according to patient advocates.

September 16, 2019 | Daily News

House Energy & Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and ranking Republican Greg Walden (OR) launched an investigation into private equity firms’ role in surprise medical billing, starting with three firms that own physician staffing companies and emergency transport companies.

September 16, 2019 | Daily News

A major increase in FDA’s budget sought by the House may be slipping out of the agency’s reach due the strong likelihood the government will start fiscal 2020 under a continuing resolution, new hurdles to Senate passage of individual spending bills, and pressure on the House to ratchet back its non-defense spending targets to the meet Bipartisan Budget Act of 2019 budget ceiling.

September 13, 2019 | Daily News

The Department of Transportation formed a task force to look into air ambulance billing, something Congress has been calling on the agency to do since passage of the 2018 Federal Aviation Association Act and made even more urgent by Capitol Hill’s recent focus on ending surprise billing.

September 11, 2019 | Daily News

The Trump administration has directed FDA to take swift action to remove non-tobacco-flavored e-cigarette products from the market as a result of preliminary data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey that shows a continued rise in youth e-cigarette use, especially through flavored products that appeal to kids, HHS announced in a Wednesday (Sept. 11) press statement.

September 11, 2019 | Daily News

House Ways & Means Committee Democrats are finalizing their surprise medical billing legislation, and, although the committee hasn’t settled on a payment rate, Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) told reporters the Democrats are not discussing an air ambulance fix.

September 11, 2019 | Daily News

House Energy & Commerce Committee Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and oversight subcommittee Chair Diana DeGette (D-CO) will hold a hearing Sept. 25 during which officials from FDA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state health agencies will testify about the public health impacts of e-cigarettes, their appeal to young people and the regulatory authorities related to e-cigarette manufacturing, sales and use.

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