May 22, 2015

House Energy and Commerce Committee Approves 21st Century Cures Legislation

Arnold & Porter Advisory

On May 21, 2015, the House Energy and Commerce Committee approved by a unanimous vote H.R. 6, the 21st Century Cures Act. House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI), Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Ranking Member Diana DeGette (D-CO), Energy and Commerce Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA), and Health Subcommittee Ranking Member Gene Green (D-TX) reached an agreement on an overall framework for the legislation in April, significantly narrowing its scope relative to the version first released in January. Over the past month, a bewildering series of adjustments have been made to many provisions of the legislation, reflecting debate amongst stakeholders, the Executive Branch, and the Congress about the appropriate scope and legislative vehicle for each provision (Cures vs. an upcoming reauthorization of FDA user fee laws), and the trade-offs associated with accelerating the development of new precision medicines.

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