The U.S. Senate on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to support sweeping legislation that will reshape the way the Food and Drug Administration approves new medicines.
It will also provide funding for cancer and Alzheimer’s research, help fight the opioid epidemic, expand access to mental health treatment and advance research into precision medicine.
Two years in the making, the 21st Century Cures Act was passed last week by the House of Representatives and will now go to President Barack Obama to sign into law. Supporters say it will speed access to new drugs and devices by allowing clinical trials to be designed with fewer patients and cheaper, easier-to-achieve goals.
“The 21st Century Cures Act is a true victory for every patient and our health care system,” Senator Pat Roberts, a Republican, said in a statement.
Critics of the legislation say it will lower standards for drug and medical device approvals and potentially jeopardize patient safety. Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren was among the handful of senators who voted against the bill, saying it contains massive hand-outs for the pharmaceutical industry that undermine its benefits.
I didn’t see that part in the article. Anyway from what I read I am torn between liking the money spent on research and disliking having even more money being spent while we are in a budget deficit. Maybe some of it could’ve been directed toward schizophrenia research.
“The legislation instructs the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to clarify when doctors can share patients’ medical information with family caregivers, as well as educate health care providers about what the law actually says”
An earlier version of the bill allowed doctors to disclose private information to families. But this one just clarifies the existing HIPPA law to allow doctors to share appointment times and medications. Some people need doctors to disclose such things to their caregivers. It does not allow doctors to say, “Oh, by the way, Sooner mentioned that he thought you were a terrible mother in session today,” or any other content of sessions. It only gives the doctors liability coverage to share the things they should be sharing anyways.