On Sept. 19, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) unveiled legislation in the form of the Lower Drug Costs Now Act (H.R. 3), an unprecedented sweeping proposal that would transfer most domestic drug pricing decision-making to U.S. and European government bureaucrats, and eviscerate the free market model that has promoted innovation, cures and treatments for millions of patients.
On behalf of our membership and California’s statewide life sciences community – a sector which employs over 311,000 Californians – California Life Sciences Association (CLSA) welcomes Senator Tom Umberg (D-Santa Ana). We look forward to working with Senator Umberg and his team to advance policies that improve patient health and bring positive change for California patients and their families.
CLSA President & CEO Mike Guerra pens an op-ed in Morning Consult regarding the dangers of policymakers utilizing foreign price controls to lower drug costs. With growing bipartisan support for these schemes, CLSA is working to educate policymakers that importing price controls will do little to lessen the financial burden for patients. Rather, these short-sighted proposals will hinder access to needed treatments and discourage medical innovation in California.
CLSA was proud to once again sponsor and participate in this year’s 7th Annual Rally for Medical Research Hill Day on Sept. 19. This annual event brings together more than 300 participants, including patient advocates, researchers, and life sciences company representatives, to call on our nation’s policymakers to ensure for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is a national priority.
On behalf of our membership and California’s statewide life sciences community – a sector which employs over 311,000 Californians – California Life Sciences Association (CLSA) welcomes Senator Lena Gonzalez (D-Long Beach). We look forward to working with Senator Gonzalez and her team to advance policies that improve patient health and bring positive change for California patients and their families.
CLSA leadership participated in an executive advocacy day on Capitol Hill on Sept. 19, that was coordinated by our national medtech association partner, AdvaMed. The purpose of the fly-in was to advocate for the full and permanent repeal of the 2.3 percent excise tax on medical device revenue that will go back into effect on January 1, 2020 if Congress does not act before the end of the year.
While fewer bills directly targeting the biopharmaceutical industry were introduced this year, which was likely due in large part to Governor Newsom’s executive order on state prescription purchasing, CLSA strongly supported several bills that reached the Governor’s desk and helped prevent a number of bills of concern from reaching his desk.
“We all agree that drug prices are high, but a proposal before the Legislature would make that situation worse, even as it seeks to solve the problem.” Read more about AB 824 in CalMatters.
CLSA Board Member Wendye Robbins, MD, President & CEO of Blade Therapeutics, pens an op-ed in the San Francisco Chronicle, urging the Legislature to make key changes to Assembly Bill 824, priority legislation for CLSA that seeks to prohibit generic drug manufacturers from seeking patent settlement agreements.
Congress will return from its annual summer District Work period (“August Recess”) after Labor Day on Sept. 9. Looking ahead to legislative agenda for the fall, healthcare, and more specifically drug pricing, is expected to remain a critical issue for lawmakers to address.