• Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    10 Proposals Worth Paying Attention to in the 21st Century Cures Act

    Earlier this week, the House Energy and Commerce Committee released a draft of an ambitious new bill, the 21st Century Cures Act . The legislation, if enacted, would radically alter the way in which drugs and devices are regulated in the US. Within the 393-page legislation are dozens and dozens of proposals, large and small. But which ones are especially worth paying attention to? We're glad you asked. What follows is our analysis of which proposals are likely to attrac...
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    BREAKING: Congress Seeks Dozens of Major Regulatory Reforms in New Bill

    The US House of Representatives' Energy and Commerce (E&C) Committee today released a long-anticipated discussion draft of its 21st Century Cures Act , an ambitious attempt to overhaul the way the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates new healthcare products in the hopes of incentivizing the creation of new products to treat patients. The 393-page draft contains five main sections, as well as dozens of subtitles: Title I—Putting Patients First By Incorpora...
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    When is a Drug a 'New' Drug? Legislation Seeks to Change Definition

    New legislation introduced in the US House of Representatives last week seeks to incentivize the development of new combination drugs by redefining what a "new" drug really is. Background Under existing rules administered by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), not all new drug products are treated the same. New chemical entities (NCEs) that have never before been approved in the US for any indication are eligible for five years of marketing exclusivity, during wh...
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    DEA Scheduling Process Targeted by Legislators Hoping to Speed up Drug Approvals

    The House of Representatives is in the advanced stages of considering legislation that could make it easier for some drug products to reach the market after being approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Background In a notice posted to the House Energy and Commerce (E&C) Committee's website on 20 January 2015, Rep. Joe Pitts (R-PA) said he will hold a meeting on 27 January 2015 to consider several pieces of legislation, including the Improving Regulat...
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    New Bill Would Reduce FDA Burden on Research-Use Devices

    A new bill introduced in the House of Representatives by a prominent Republican legislator would make it easier for companies to distribute investigational medical devices explicitly labeled as being "for research use only (RUO)." The Medical Testing Availability Act of 2015 , sponsored by Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX), the vice chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Health, is similar to an identically titled bill introduced by Burgess in 2013 ....
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    Legislation Seeks to Overhaul FDA's Compassionate Use Program

    New legislation introduced in the House of Representatives would makes changes to the US Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) "expanded access"—sometimes called " compassionate use "—policies in the hopes of making it easier for terminally ill patients to access potentially life-saving drugs. Background Under normal circumstances, companies seeking FDA approval for a new drug will first ask regulators for permission to begin a clinical trial using an application known a...
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    Legislation to Increase Regulatory Incentives to Fight Ebola Awaits Obama's Signature

    The US House has quickly passed legislation making changes to the  Neglected Tropical Disease Priority Review Voucher  (PRV) system in the hopes of making it more enticing to pharmaceutical companies, and in particular to those developing new treatments for the Ebola virus. S.2917 , the  Adding Ebola to the FDA Priority Review Voucher Program Act , passed the US House of Representatives by unanimous consent on 3 December 2013, just one day after the same bill was pas...
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    Bill to Speed up Approvals for Sunscreen Ingredients, Other Drugs Awaits Obama's Signature

    US legislators in the House of Representatives have passed a Senate bill which would overhaul the manner in which the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves sunscreen ingredients and other products through a rarely used regulatory pathway known as the Time-and-Extent process (TEA), all but assuring the bill will be passed into law. Background The bill, known as the Sunscreen Innovation Act (SIA) , follows extensive complaints by several companies that their sun...
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    As FDA Tries to Regulate Lab-Developed Tests, Congress Signals Potential Opposition

    Last month, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced it would soon seek to regulate lab-developed tests more similarly to in vitro diagnostics (IVDs), citing the devices' increasing complexity and role in critical clinical decision-making. And while the plan has received some pushback from legal groups , including the Washington Legal Foundation, it might soon have another, more prominent opponent: Members of Congress. Background LDTs are, as their name imp...
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    House Legislators Clear Sunscreen Innovation Bill, but Questions Remain

    The US House of Representatives has voted in favor of a bill that would require the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to speed up its assessment process for new sunscreen ingredients that have been awaiting regulatory approval for as long as a decade in some cases. Background The bill, the Sunscreen Innovation Act (H.R. 4250) requires FDA legislators to speed up their review of sunscreen ingredients submitted under the Time-and-Extent Application (TEA) process. ...
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    ONC Director Defends Health IT Safety Center as it Struggles to Take Shape

    • 21 July 2014
    In response to pressure from members of Congress, a group of federal health IT regulators is clarifying which authorities a proposed Health IT Safety Center would—and would not —have. Background In 2012, the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (FDASIA) was passed into law, and with it a requirement that US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health IT and the Federal Communication Commission all work...
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    House Republicans Increase Pressure on FDA Proposal, Citing Agency's 'Dubious' Behavior

    A new group of House legislators is calling on the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to answer questions about a plan to overhaul the way in which generic drug labels are updated to reflect new safety risks, saying the plan appears to have been improperly influenced by a special interest group. Background In November 2013, FDA unveiled a new proposed rule, Supplemental Applications Proposing Labeling Changes for Approved Drugs and Biological Products . The rule wou...