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Health Subcommittee to Markup Ten Bills on Thursday

Jul 9, 2019
Press Release
The Subcommittee Will Consider Bipartisan Legislation to Reauthorize Public Health and Medicare Programs, Improve Drug Pricing Transparency, Provide Medicaid Funding for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Territories, and Address Surprise Medical Billing

Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Health Subcommittee Chairwoman Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA) announced today that the Health Subcommittee will hold a markup on Thursday, July 11, at 10 am in the John D. Dingell Room, 2123 Rayburn House Office Building.  The Subcommittee will markup ten bills to lower Americans’ health care and prescription drug costs.

“The Energy and Commerce Committee is committed to putting consumers first, to improving affordability and quality of health care for all Americans, expanding access to care, and to reining in the soaring prices of health care and prescription drugs,” Pallone and Eshoo said.  “On Thursday, we will continue to follow through on that commitment as we markup ten bipartisan bills that will take great strides toward achieving these goals.”

The Subcommittee will consider the following bills on Thursday:

H.R. 2781, the “EMPOWER for Health Act of 2019”, introduced by Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) and Health Subcommittee Ranking Member Michael Burgess (R-TX), would provide a five-year reauthorization for the Public Health Service Act Title VII health care workforce development grant programs, including Area Health Education Centers, and Health Professions Training for Diversity.  The House passed similar legislation in the 115th Congress with broad bipartisan support, but it was not considered in the Senate.

H.R. 728, the “Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. David Joyce (R-OH), Doris Matsui (D-CA), David McKinley (R-WV), Kathy Castor (D-FL), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), and Lauren Underwood (D-IL), would reauthorize federal nursing workforce development grant programs administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) for five years.  The House passed similar legislation in the 115th Congress with broad bipartisan support, but it was not considered in the Senate.

H.R. 1058, the “Autism CARES Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Mike Doyle (D-PA), would reauthorize funding for programs at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and HRSA through fiscal year (FY) 2024.  The legislation expands efforts to conduct research, surveillance, education, detection, and intervention for all individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) across their lifespan, regardless of age.  It also aims to reduce disparities among individuals from diverse racial, ethnic, geographic, or linguistic backgrounds, and directs additional care to rural and underserved areas. 

H.R. 2507, the “Newborn Screening Saves Lives Reauthorization Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), Michael Simpson (R-ID), Katherine Clark (D-MA), and Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA), would reauthorize newborn screening programs for five years.  The bill authorizes appropriations of $60.65 million per year through FY 2024.

H.R. 776, the “Emergency Medical Services for Children Program Reauthorization Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. Peter King (R-NY), Kathy Castor (D-FL), G.K. Butterfield (D-NC), and Chris Stewart (R-UT), would reauthorize the Emergency Medical Services for Children Program at $22.3 million dollars each year through FY 2024.

H.R. 2035, the “Lifespan Respite Care Reauthorization Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. James Langevin (D-RI) and Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), would reauthorize the Lifespan Respite Care program at $20 million in FY 2020, and increase the funding level by ten million dollars each year thereafter through FY 2024.

H.R. 2296, the “FAIR Drug Pricing Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) and Francis Rooney (R-FL), would require certain drug manufacturers to submit documentation to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) 30 days before increasing the price of a qualifying drug.  An Amendment In the Nature of Substitute (AINS) is expected to be offered to H.R. 2296 that will make changes to the underlying legislation, including changes to the qualifying drug provisions, the HHS reporting requirements, and reporting timeline for manufacturers of qualifying drugs in calendar year 2019.  The AINS will also include provisions from the following bills:  H.R. 2115, the “Public Disclosures of Drug Discounts Act,” introduced by Reps. Spanberger (D-VA) and Arrington (R-TX); H.R. 2376, the “Prescription Pricing for the People Act,” introduced by Reps. Collins (R-GA) and Nadler (D-NY); H.R. 2064, the “Sunshine for Samples Act,” introduced by Reps. Chu (D-CA) and Nunes (R-CA); and H.R. 2087, the “Drug Price Transparency Act,” introduced by Reps. Doggett (D-TX) and Buchanan (R-FL).  In addition, the AINS will include a provision that requires prescription drug plan sponsors to include real-time benefit information in their electronic prescription programs. 

H.R. 2328, the “Community Health, Investment, Modernization, and Excellence Act of 2019”, introduced by Reps. Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ) and Elise Stefanik (R-NY), would reauthorize and extend funding for the Community Health Center Fund and the National Health Service Corps.  An AINS is expected to be offered to H.R. 2328, which, in addition to four-year extensions of the Community Health Center Fund at $4 billion annually and National Health Service Corps at $310 million annually, includes four-year extensions of the following programs: $126.5 million annually in funding for the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program, $150 million annually each for the Special Diabetes Program and the Special Diabetes Program for Indians, $6 million annually for Family to Family Health Information Centers, $75 million annually for the Personal Responsibility Education Program, and $75 million annually for the Sexual Risk Avoidance Program. 

The AINS will also include three-year extensions of certain expiring Medicare programs. 

Additionally, the AINS will include two bills that passed the House in the 115th Congress: H.R. 2371, the “Hearts Act,” introduced by Reps. Mike Thompson (D-CA) and Drew Ferguson (R-GA), and H.R. 2293, the “Protecting Access to Wheelchairs Act”, introduced by Reps. John Larson (D-CT) and Lee Zeldin (R-NY). 

An amendment to the AINS is expected to be offered that would eliminate the allotment reductions for Medicaid disproportionate share hospitals for FY 2020 and 2021 and would reduce the reduction from $8 billion to $4 billion in FY 2022. 

H.R. 3631, the “Territories Health Care Improvement Act”, introduced by Reps. Darren Soto (D-FL) and Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), would increase Puerto Rico’s Medicaid funding to approximately $3 billion annually for four years, increase the federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP) for four years, and make important program integrity improvements to Puerto Rico’s Medicaid program.  It would require Puerto Rico to have an asset verification program in place by the end of the third year, and a payment error rate measurement program in place by the end of the fourth year.  It would also provide six years of increased federal funding and increased FMAP for the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.  By the end of year four, the legislation would require all of the territories to have established a Transformed Medicaid Statistical Information System (T-MSIS) and a Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU). 

H.R. 3630, the “No Surprises Act”, introduced by Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Ranking Member Greg Walden (R-OR), would prohibit surprise billing and limit patient cost-sharing to the in-network amount for emergency services.  Additionally, the bill would prohibit surprise medical bills from facility-based providers that patients cannot reasonably choose, whether arising from emergency care or scheduled care.  The bill establishes a payment benchmark to resolve out-of-network payment disputes between providers and insurers. 

Information for this markup, including the Committee Memorandum, electronic copies of the legislation and any amendments, and a link to the live webcast will be posted HERE as they become available.