Former congressmen push for action on medical innovation legislation

Two former Tennessee congressmen say government officials and the healthcare industry cannot let up on the push to pass medical innovation legislation.

William H. Frist, a former Republican senator, and Bart Gordon, a former Democratic representative, write at The Hill that despite the election furor overtaking Capitol Hill, the work that has been done in medical innovation legislation--including the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pension's bill and the 21st Century Cures Act--must continue.

Frist and Gordon, now co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center's initiative on advancing medical innovation, say there are 10 areas that need congressional action.

They include:

  • Supporting precision medicine to help find treatments for diseases that do not yet have a cure, including cancer, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. The federal government is already playing a big role in cancer research and treatment through its moonshot initiative.
  • Enhancing interoperability to increases the ability for the healthcare industry to share data electronically and improve quality of care.
  • Reducing uncertainty surrounding health IT regulations
  • Creating a regulatory pathway for cellular therapies

"Bipartisan action to advance medical innovation for healthier Americans is now within reach. We urge Congress to sustain the momentum to enact practical, meaningful bipartisan medical innovation legislation," Frist and Gordon write.

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