O’Halleran issues statement on Energy and Commerce Committee Markup of H.R.3

October 18, 2019
Contributed Columns

WASHINGTON D.C. —Following Thursday’s full-day House Energy and Commerce Committee markup of H.R. 3, the Lower Drug Costs Now Act, Congressman Tom O’Halleran, (AZ-01) released the following statement on Friday. 

“This year alone, I have held 26 town halls in my District. At every one of them, I heard from Arizona seniors, veterans, and families about the rising costs of health care and prescription drugs. This long-overdue legislation takes a good first step toward reforming a system that has allowed for these skyrocketing prices.

We must remain committed to a holistic approach that increases transparency in the drug pricing industry so our constituents can see exactly why and how their drugs cost three to four times more than the same drugs in other countries. It is paramount that we protect innovation in drug research and development while allowing and empowering Medicare to negotiate for fair prices. This is not an issue we can afford to delay.

I was also pleased to be able to offer my amendment that would instruct the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a grant program for hospitals in rural and medically underserved areas, and for critical access hospitals who host residents on rotation through the Graduate Medical Education Program, which has proven results in incentivizing doctors to stay in rural areas.”

Watch Rep. O’Halleran’s opening remarks, here and his offer of the GME amendment, here.

Recently, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office released a report concluding that the Lower Drug Costs Now Act would save Medicare $345 billion, lower drug prices negotiated in the first year by 55 percent, and bring down the costs of health care premiums for American families across the board.