This Week in Washington: President releases FY2024 Budget



Prescription Information Modernization Act of 2023 Introduced

On March 9, Reps. Harshbarger (R-TN) and Sherrill (D-NJ) introduced the Prescription Information Modernization Act of 2023. The bipartisan bill would give healthcare professionals the option to choose whether to receive digital or printed versions of prescription information from manufacturers. Current policy restricts healthcare professionals from obtaining prescription information digitally. The bill will allow the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to move forward with a proposed rule that will grant drug manufacturers permission to transmit prescription information electronically.

For more information, click here.

EFFECTIVE Act Introduced

On March 3, Reps. Trone (D-MD) and Meuser (R-PA) introduced the Ensuring the FDA Fully Examines Clinical Trial Impact and Vitalness before Endorsement (EFFECTIVE) Act. The bipartisan bill would grant the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority to deny new drug applications for opioids if they do not offer material safety advantages over approved opioids already on the market. Sens. Manchin (D-WV) and Braun (R-IN) introduced a companion bill in the Senate.

For more information, click here.


Senators Send Letter Concerning Healthcare Pricing Transparency

On March 6, Sens. Hassan (D-NH) and Braun (R-IN) sent a letter to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, expressing their concerns over the amount of transparency in healthcare pricing. The senators are concerned health insurance companies are evading CMS’ July 2022 Transparency in Coverage rule. That rule requires health insurance companies to publish their in- and out-of-network rates for healthcare plans. The letter urges CMS to update the rule and increase its enforcement of health plan pricing transparency and compliance.

For more information, click here.

Access to Prescription Digital Therapeutics Act of 2023 Introduced

On March 8, Sens. Shaheen (D-NH) and Capito (R-WV) introduced the Access to Prescription Digital Therapeutics Act of 2023. The bipartisan bill would expand Medicare coverage to include Prescription Digital Therapeutics (PDTs). PDTs are software-based disease treatments that can be used to treat a variety of illnesses, such as mental health and substance abuse disorders. Reps. Hern (R-OK) and Thompson (D-CA) introduced a companion bill in the House.

For more information, click here.

Modernizing Opioid Treatment Access Act Introduced

On March 6, Sens. Markey (D-MA) and Paul (R-KY) introduced the Modernizing Opioid Treatment Access Act. The legislation would help patients access medication treatment for Opioid Use Disorder (OUD), by updating outdated rules, allowing board-certified physicians to prescribe methadone and granting U.S. pharmacies permission to dispense methadone. It would also require the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to submit an annual report that provides the names of patients who were prescribed methadone, as well as those of the providers and state physicians who are registered to prescribe methadone. Reps. Norcross (D-NJ) and Bacon (R-NE) introduced a companion bill in the Senate.

Cosponsors of the Senate bill include Sens. Sanders (I-VT), Braun (R-IN), Booker (D-NJ) and Hassan (D-NH). Cosponsors of the House bill include Reps. Kuster (D-NH), Trone (D-MD), Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Tonko (D-NY), Pettersen (D-CO) and Kim (D-NJ).

For more information, click here.

Read more on healthcare policy in McGuireWoods Consulting’s Washington Healthcare Update.