Look Ahead: Committee Announces Hearing Schedule for the Week of March 3

February 28, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC – The House Energy and Commerce Committee today announced its hearing schedule for the week of March 3, 2014.  The committee will review the Obama administration’s proposed changes to labeling for generic drugs, examine ways the administration can better manage Medicare to protect seniors, continue its examination of the satellite television law, and review the state of the nation’s fuel supply and energy infrastructure as part of its review of the benefits and challenges to energy access in the 21st century.

On Monday, March 3, the Health Subcommittee will review the FDA’s recently proposed regulation that would introduce new uncertainty and legal risk around the labeling for generic drugs. The proposed regulation would undermine the Hatch-Waxman Act and the “sameness” requirement that, for years, has provided patients and providers a clear, straightforward understanding of the benefits and risks of different generic drugs while also encouraging competition in the market. Subcommittee members seek to understand the cost of the proposed regulation and how it will affect both patients and prescribers. The Majority Memorandum and witness list is available here. Witness testimony will be available at the same link as it is posted.

On Tuesday, March 4, the Health Subcommittee will hold a hearing entitled “Keeping the Promise: How Better Managing Medicare Can Protect Seniors' Benefits and Save Them Money."  The Medicare program is on a path toward insolvency; with Medicare’s own actuaries confirming that the program will be insolvent as soon as 2017. Subcommittee members seek to better understand steps the administration can take now to improve operational aspects of the program, including contractors and others who work alongside CMS. The hearing will also serve as a forum to discuss what additional steps can be taken to modernize the management of the program and help improve its financial outlook. Additionally, the HHS OIG will release two reports on the day of the hearing regarding existing fraud in the Medicare program and what tools the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has at its disposal to address fraud. The Majority Memorandum and witness list is available here. Witness testimony will be available at the same link as it is posted.

On Wednesday, March 5, the Communications and Technology Subcommittee will convene a hearing on the “Reauthorization of the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act.” This hearing will continue the subcommittee’s work to examine STELA, portions of which are set to sunset on December 31, 2014. A witness list is available here. The Majority Memorandum and witness testimony will be available at the same link as they are posted.

On Thursday, March 6, the Energy and Power Subcommittee will continue its hearing series on “Benefits and Challenges to Energy Access in the 21st Century” with a look at the nation’s fuel supply and energy infrastructure. Members will focus on the critical need for modern infrastructure to meet new challenges of increasing U.S. energy abundance, including the transmission, storage, and distribution of fuel for consumers. U.S. energy demands in every state are changing, and this hearing will explore how rail, pipelines, and trucking play a key role in moving supplies to markets. The hearing will also examine how inadequate infrastructure has contributed to recent regional shortages of natural gas and propane. The Majority Memorandum, a witness list, and witness testimony will be available here as they are posted.

Hearing Details:

Monday, March 3, 2014
2 p.m.
2123 Rayburn
Subcommittee on Health
Hearing on “Examining Concerns Regarding FDA's Proposed Changes to Generic Drug Labeling”

Tuesday, March 4, 2014
10 a.m.
2123 Rayburn
Subcommittee on Health
Hearing on “Keeping the Promise: How Better Managing Medicare Can Protect Seniors”

Wednesday, March 5, 2014
10 a.m.
2123 Rayburn
Subcommittee on Communications and Technology
Hearing on “Reauthorization of the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act”

Thursday, March 6, 2014
9 a.m.
2123 Rayburn
Subcommittee on Energy and Power
Hearing on “Benefits of and Challenges to Energy Access in the 21st Century: Fuel Supply and Infrastructure”

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