Senate confirmation of Mark McClellan, M.D., as administrator of CMS is being challenged by several senators from both political parties over his opposition as the current commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration to the reimportation of prescription drugs.
The Senate Finance Committee is holding a hearing today on McClellan?s nomination, which is expected to be confirmed.
Yet Sens. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) have said they will hold up McClellan's nomination.
None are on the Senate Finance Committee, which is scheduled to vote on the nomination tomorrow. The full Senate is expected to take up the nomination this week.
Though patients in the U.S. are struggling to pay for drugs, McClellan has adamantly opposed reimportation, saying it poses a threat to the health of Americans.
McClellan addressed the committee, saying, "As at the FDA, I will work to ensure that careful analysis based on the facts and the science, integrity and thoughtful decisionmaking are the foundation for all of our work. We will not always agree, but I hope to make it possible for us to work together effectively to meet the challenges ahead."