McConnell To Seek ‘Permanent Fix’ For Health Care Program For Retired Miners
The program was slated to expire at the end of the year, but Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., put funding to extend it through April in a bill passed by Congress this month. Also, some experts are looking at work Congress will face on drug user fee program.
CQ Roll Call:
McConnell Wants 'Permanent Fix' To Miner Health Care Program
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday he will seek a “permanent fix” to fortify a depleted health care program for retired coal miners that complicated negotiations earlier this month to keep the government funded. “We’re going to try to go for a permanent fix because these folks deserve to be protected,” the Kentucky Republican said in an interview on KET, a public television station, Monday night. “Their health care deserves to be protected. It’s important,” McConnell said. “It’s collateral damage from the decline of the coal industry, much of it attributable to the policies of Barack Obama, which I’m hoping the new president will reverse.” (Bowman, 12/20)
Cures Could Help Speed Along Drug User Fees Next Year
Congressional Republicans are plotting an ambitious health policy agenda for 2017, but lawmakers will still have to reauthorize the Food and Drug Administration user fee program for speeding along new drug and device approvals. Some experts who have worked in drug policy say the passage of the 21st Century Cures Act earlier this month could ease that process, as many of the policies that could have been proposed to pass alongside the reauthorization are now law. (McIntire, 12/20)