Hart Health Strategies provides a comprehensive policy briefing on a weekly basis. This in-depth health policy briefing is sent out at the beginning of each week. The health policy briefing recaps the previous week and previews the week ahead. It alerts clients to upcoming congressional hearings, newly introduced bills, regulatory announcements, and implementation activity related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and other health laws.


FDA Administrator Gottlieb Announces Resignation

Administrator of Food and Drugs Scott Gottlieb announced his decision to resign effective next month. According to his formal statement, Gottlieb is leaving the agency to spend more time with his family. His replacement has not yet been announced. During his two years at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) he led the agency’s response to the opioid epidemic, prioritized the approval of generic drugs, and spearheaded a plan to curb youth vaping. His contributions were praised by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar following the announcement of his resignation.

Lawmakers Consider Measles Outbreaks and Rise of Under-Vaccination

Lawmakers have turned their focus to recent measles outbreaks across the country resulting from a small but growing portion of the population questioning the safety of vaccines and the rise of under-vaccination. The measles outbreaks have been the subject of two congressional hearings in recent weeks. Reps. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) and Michael Burgess (R-Texas) introduced a bipartisan resolution (H.Res. 179) last week recognizing the importance of vaccines and urging parents to immunize their children. In response to a request for information from Rep. Schiff, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Facebook and Google released details of their plans to address misinformation about vaccines. Schiff had expressed concerns about the platforms promoting information that discouraged parents from vaccinating their children. The Annals of Internal Medicine also published new research last week reaffirming the medical consensus denying any connection between the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism. Researchers also concluded that vaccination is not likely to trigger any developmental disorders.

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