The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee will take its first look at how the Trump administration has implemented last year's mega 21st Century Cures Act. The law, signed by President Barack Obama on Dec. 13, 2016, was Congress' last sweeping bipartisan success. It enacted reforms for the Food and Drug Administration to speed drug and device development and funded biomedical research that included then-Vice President Joe Biden's Cancer Moonshot initiative to find cures for cancer.
Gottlieb, Collins set to give progress report on 21st Century Cures Act
On Thursday, members of the key Senate committee behind the law will grill FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb and National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins on how they have advanced and implemented provisions under the Cures Act.
"On the one-year anniversary of Senate passage of 21st Century Cures, it's fitting for the Senate health committee to hear from Dr. Collins and Dr. Gottlieb about the progress that has been made in implementing this law, which has such remarkable potential to bring new innovations to patients it was called 'the most important legislation of the year' by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell," HELP Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said in a statement.
In a counterpart hearing last week before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Gottlieb touted the FDA's streamlined drug approval process and said the agency uses a "patient-centered" approach when reviewing drugs and devices and patient data to develop regulations.
Next week the Senate HELP Committee will convene again to look at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's implementation of the Cures Act's mental health provisions.
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