Biden signs $1.7T omnibus, paving way for multiple health policy priorities

Just ahead of the year-end deadline, President Joe Biden signed into law a massive $1.7 trillion spending package that includes a slew of healthcare policy priorities.

Biden signed the bill late on Dec. 29 after it was flown to him while vacationing during the holidays in the U.S. Virgin Islands, the White House said. In a tweet, the president touted the package as the capper to "a year of historic progress."

"It'll invest in medical research, safety, veteran healthcare, disaster recovery, VAWA funding—and gets crucial assistance to Ukraine," Biden wrote in the Twitter post. "Looking forward to more in 2023."

As Fierce Healthcare previously reported, the omnibus tackles several key healthcare policy issues, including Medicaid redeterminations, a major concern for states as the COVID-19 public health emergency winds down. The spending legislation will allow states to begin redeterminations in April—even if the PHE is still in effect—when previously they were stuck waiting for the final word on the PHE's end date.

The bill also extends additional funding for public health as well as telehealth flexibilities in Medicare that were rolled out under the PHE.

The spending package will fund the government through September and came together after exhaustive negotiations between Democrats and Republicans in Congress.