House Passes Measure With Health-Related Funding Increases
On Wednesday, the House passed a $1.2 trillion continuing resolution (HR 3082) that would set federal spending through the remainder of the 2011 fiscal year and increase funding for several health-related programs and initiatives, the Wall Street Journal reports (Boles, Wall Street Journal, 12/8).
Although much of the resolution would continue to fund various programs at FY 2010 levels, it would increase funding in several health-related areas, including:
- Implementation of the health care reform law;
- Health care antifraud programs;
- Medicare operating expenses and compensation, including around $170 million to reprocess physician claims from a temporary payment decrease last spring;
- AIDS drug assistance programs (CQ HealthBeat, 12/8); and
- Veterans Administration medical operations (CQ Today, 12/8).
The resolution also would allow NIH to use funds within the Office of the Director for the Cures Acceleration Network, a program aimed at improving coordination between the agency and drugmakers seeking government-funded research for new therapies.
In addition, the legislation would manage funding within the Prevention and Public Health Fund for immunization initiatives, public health work force development and chronic disease prevention (CQ HealthBeat, 12/8).
Food Safety Bill Included
House members sought to correct a drafting error in the Senate-passed food safety bill (S 510) by attaching it to the CR, CQ Today reports.
The bill would authorize increased government authority and involvement in food-related recalls and processing plant inspections. FDA would have enforcement powers in monitoring 80% of the national food supply.
House members decided that attaching the legislation to the CR provided an acceptable strategy to fix revenue revenue-raising provisions in the bill. Passage of the CR sends the food safety bill back to the Senate for final approval (Ferguson, CQ Today, 12/8).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.