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Congress

May 18, 2021 | Daily News

Key House lawmakers are in talks with the White House about using upcoming Cures 2.0 legislation as a vehicle for the Biden administration’s proposed new biomedical research agency, the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H), which would sit within the National Institutes of Health and bring together the government, private sector and academia to research new therapies for diseases such as cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer’s.

May 17, 2021 | Daily News

Key health policy experts from both sides of the political spectrum say a recent survey by the Purchasers Business Group on Health (PBGH) and the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) finding employers are increasingly open to government intervention to rein in health care costs could boost the prospects of Congress acting this year to lower prescription drug costs.

May 14, 2021 | Daily News

The Biden administration announced Friday (May 14) it’s delaying the Trump-era rule on Medicare instantly covering FDA-approved breakthrough devices until Dec. 15 despite a push by medical device makers and lawmakers to implement the pathway as soon as possible.

May 14, 2021 | Daily News

HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra recently pushed back against a Republican lawmaker’s assertion that a portion of HHS’ COVID-19 testing funds will need to be reappropriated for new uses, since the agency has yet to use up all of the money for testing efforts.

May 14, 2021 | Daily News

Providers applauded a bipartisan House bill reintroduced Thursday (May 13) that would create an electronic prior authorization system to streamline and increase transparency around prior authorization for Medicare Advantage plans.

May 13, 2021 | Daily News

Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet (CO) plans to reintroduce his bipartisan antimicrobial drug reimbursement bill this year with revisions that include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations for tackling antibiotic resistance, the lawmaker told former FDA chief Mark McClellan Wednesday (May 13).

May 13, 2021 | Daily News

The Federal Trade Commission published a report Tuesday (May 11) calling for right-to-repair laws based on what it says is a lack of evidence supporting original manufacturers’ justifications for repair restrictions, though the agency says it is unlikely a one-size-fits-all approach could encompass both medical devices and consumer products.

May 12, 2021 | Daily News

Lawmakers from both parties pressed HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra over surprise billing implementation, Medicare policy and non-ACA-compliant plans, including the Trump-era short-term plans and Association Health Plans during a wide-ranging hearing on the department’s fiscal 2022 discretionary budget.

May 12, 2021 | Daily News

HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra told House Energy & Commerce Committee members Wednesday (May 12) there is more need for provider relief than there is money available, while Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and his colleagues pressed the former California attorney general to give providers more time to spend their COVID-19 relief.

May 12, 2021 | Daily News

Texas representatives grilled HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra Wednesday (May 12) over CMS’ recent decision to revoke a Trump-era uncompensated care waiver for the state, coming as the Senate simultaneously moved toward a vote to confirm Chiquita Brooks-LaSure as CMS chief despite Sen. John Cornyn’s (R-TX) hold on floor action due to the waiver.

May 12, 2021 | Daily News

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) next week will bring back to the House floor a bipartisan bill that aims to close a loophole in the Orphan Drug Act, after Republicans blocked the bill’s passage Tuesday evening (May 11) due to a fallout between the measure’s lead Democratic sponsor and former GOP co-sponsor Rep. Buddy Carter (GA).

May 12, 2021 | Daily News

Ten House Democrats are urging Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to pursue bipartisan, bicameral drug pricing legislation that focuses on affordability, instead of prices.

May 11, 2021 | Daily News

A bipartisan group of 77 lawmakers are joining hospitals’ push to have HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra extend the deadline to spend provider relief funds and expedite distribution of the remaining COVID-19 relief.

May 11, 2021 | Daily News

Democratic leaders of the House Energy & Commerce Committee on Tuesday pressed HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra to restore FDA’s premarket regulation of laboratory-developed tests by scrapping a Trump-era policy that revoked the agency’s jurisdiction.

May 10, 2021 | Daily News

The Biden administration announced Monday (May 10) it has begun releasing coronavirus relief funds for states, counties and cities governments allocated under the American Rescue Plan, and per stakeholders’ urging, the Treasury released an interim final rule on how local governments can use the COVID-19 relief.

May 10, 2021 | Daily News

House Oversight & Reform Committee Chair Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) is pushing for bipartisan passage of the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act, a package of bills that includes provisions meant to build the perinatal workforce and address social determinants of health.

May 10, 2021 | Daily News

A bipartisan group of 20 House lawmakers wants Congress to stop blocking FDA from using appropriations funding to finalize a rule that would require pharmaceutical prescribing information be shared electronically, rather than in paper format.

May 06, 2021 | Daily News

Lawmakers and health care experts worry that genetic testing conducted at the federal and consumer levels could pose security risks for individuals and the United States, especially if the data are sold to other countries like China.

May 06, 2021 | Daily News

CMS released Wednesday (May 5) a long-awaited COVID-19 waiver that lets Medicare reimburse ground ambulances for treating a patient in place when a community’s pandemic emergency protocols keep an ambulance from taking a lower acuity patient to a medical facility.

May 05, 2021 | Daily News

More than 100 House Democrats have thrown their weight behind a proposed World Trade Organization waiver of certain intellectual property obligations for COVID-19 vaccines and medicines, with half the caucus entreating the Biden administration to support the waiver as a moral, economic and public health priority.

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