Bills Seek to Fight Prenatal Opioid Abuse, Bring Consistency to Reviews, and Protect Manufacturing Jobs
WASHINGTON, DC – Building upon the Energy and Commerce Committee’s bipartisan #RecordOfSuccess, President Obama recently signed two public health bills into law. S. 799, the Protecting Our Infants Act of 2015, will help combat the rise in prenatal opioid abuse and H.R. 639, the Improving Regulatory Transparency for New Medical Therapies Act will bring consistency to pharmaceutical reviews while protecting manufacturing jobs. An important component of 21st Century Cures was also included in H.R. 639.
“Opioid abuse has become a growing epidemic in Michigan and the nation as a whole, and the sad reality is many newborns are suffering as a result. This law requires HHS take an even closer look to ensure we are doing all we can to protect infants from this awful scourge,” said full committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI). “I am also pleased an important component of 21st Century Cures that will protect U.S. manufacturing jobs is now law. We have had some great success on the public health front, and these two new laws will make a difference in the lives of many.”
The two bills signed into law were:
S. 799, the Protecting Our Infants Act of 2015, will require the Secretary of Health and Human Services to conduct a review to identify possible gaps in the research, prevention, and treatment of prenatal opioid abuse and infants born experiencing withdrawal.
H.R. 639, the Improving Regulatory Transparency for New Medical Therapies Act, sponsored by Health Subcommittee Chairman Joseph Pitts (R-PA), will improve the transparency and consistency of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s scheduling of FDA-approved treatments so these drugs can get to patients more efficiently.
The legislation also includes H.R. 2340, which previously passed the House as part of H.R. 6, the 21st Century Cures Act. Currently, the Controlled Substances Import and Export Act places burdensome requirements on American pharmaceutical companies operating abroad. When enacted, this bill will put companies manufacturing drug products that contain controlled substances in the U.S. on an equal playing field with foreign manufacturers who are not subject to similar export restrictions. By including the language from H.R. 2340, H.R 639 will keep manufacturing jobs from going overseas.