Mar 22, 2018

House Clears Path for Right to Try; Senate Can Send to President’s Desk

Post by Freedom Partners

The House of Representatives late yesterday evening took a critical step towards giving tens of thousands of terminally-ill patients the right to try, approving legislation that would extend to them access to potentially life-saving treatments and medication. The bill earned support from both sides of the aisle and now heads to the Senate where a similar measure earned unanimous, bipartisan support last year.

CQ reports:

The House passed legislation Wednesday, 267-149, designed to expand access to unapproved treatments for dying patients.

The bill had support from nearly all House Republicans and several dozen Democrats.

The bill would change current law so that drugmakers who wish to provide a treatment to a patient outside of a clinical trial no longer have to ask the FDA for permission… The bill would also provide incentives for drug companies to offer more treatments to patients who fail to qualify for clinical trials.

Following yesterday’s vote, Freedom Partners Executive Vice President commended the House’s approval, and called for the Senate to quickly take up the bill:

“Tens of thousands of terminally-ill patients and their families are counting on Congress to give them the right to try, and today’s approval by the House of Representatives is a critical step towards making their hopes a reality. We are encouraged by its continued bipartisan support, and are hopeful that potentially life-saving treatments and medication will soon be available to those who need it most. 

“While these patients have no time to waste, we strongly urge Senator McConnell to quickly take up this measure in the Senate and act on it with the urgency it deserves. President Trump is ready to sign this important legislation into law as soon as Congress can get it to his desk.”

Politico reported this morning that while “Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell’s office declined to provide any guidance on if and when the Senate might consider the House proposal,” the Senate “is expected to eventually pass the House bill.”