Press release | Press releases | Writing

WASHINGTON-Today, the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) advanced the PREVENT Pandemics Act, which includes seven bills and additional provisions led by U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, MD (R-LA). Dr. Cassidy’s bills prepare America for future pandemics, by strengthening our strategic national stockpile and increasing coordination between our public health infrastructure and our health care system. The PREVENT Pandemics Act passed the HELP 20-2 committee and is now heading to the Senate for a vote.

“COVID showed us what we didn’t know. This legislation draws those lessons and makes us better prepared to counter such threats in the future,” said Dr. Cassidy.

Cassidy’s legislation in the PREVENT Pandemics Act includes:

  • The Tracking Pathogens Act strengthens the United States’ ability to anticipate future pandemics before they arrive on our shores, using genomic sequencing and other cutting-edge tools.
  • The Medical Device Integrity Act supports that essential medical supplies must be made in America and ensures access to high-quality personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical devices in every community. It also tackles counterfeit devices by giving the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the power to request registrations from device manufacturers and requires them to comply with those requests.
  • The Emergency Medical Products Manufacturing Strategic Planning Act requires the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) to maintain a voluntary network of manufacturers willing to engage with the federal government for the purposes of the production of medical products during a public health emergency.
  • Strengthening the US National Strategic Stockpile Act reduces America’s reliance on foreign adversaries such as China to maintain our national strategic stockpile and instead boosts domestic manufacturing of medical supplies. It also improves transparency to ensure the effectiveness of the national strategic stockpile during future public health emergencies.
  • The Modernizing Biomonitoring and Outbreak Forecasting Capabilities Act requires the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to better track infectious diseases to improve outbreak forecasting capabilities and improve our responses to future pandemics.
  • The Public Health Preparedness and Response Centers Reauthorization Act improves communication in public health preparedness and response. The bill designates regional academic and medical centers as research and communications centers that disseminate public health information during a public health emergency.
  • Legislation to leverage real-world evidence in the FDA approval process enables the FDA to develop a clear framework of real-world evidence (RWE) gathered during emergency use authorization (EUA ) to accelerate approvals for drugs, biologicals, vaccines and medical devices.
  • Provision that allows biological products to hold the Qualified Infectious Disease Product (QIDP) designation.
  • Provision that includes “alternate transaction authority” for the CDC that will reduce administrative hurdles for the agency when trying to respond to a public health emergency.
  • Provision that promotes better management of national strategic stock by leveraging vendor-managed inventory strategies and other private sector best practices.

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