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Latest From Sue Darcey
The number of direct-to-consumer advertisements for molecular-based tests rose exponentially from 1997 to 2016, according to a medical marketing analysis released earlier this month in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Simultaneously, laboratory test manufacturers increased spending on ads and direct spending on physicians who work with the tests from $75.4m to $82.6m.
Passage of a US FDA diagnostics reform bill is one priority for the US House Energy and Commerce Committee in 2019, said cosponsor and committee member Rep. Diana Degette, D-Colo.
Chairs of Democratic-controlled health committees in the US House, and Democrats serving as ranking members of US Senate health panels, sent a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Department of Health and Human Services last week questioning the agencies’ expenditures of user-fee funds intended to support outreach activities under the Affordable Care Act, which the Trump administration opposes.
In setting his agenda for the US Senate Finance Committee in 2019, incoming Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, says he will continue to cosponsor bills to end the device tax, focus on lowering prescription drugs and other medical product health-care costs, expand tax breaks for business, and make sure Congress has a strong hand in negotiating trade and tariff talks.
Device companies in Canada and foreign firms selling to the market likely will be able to adjust to Health Canada’s stepped-up device safety “action plan,” but small health-care facilities and some clinics may face challenges in adjusting to new reporting rules, says the agency and Canadian device industry group MEDEC.
Newly-elected Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., says her priorities are ending the government shutdown, lowering health-care costs, and adoption of new House rules that could make repealing measures like the medical device tax more difficult.