Source: American Academy of Family Physicians Washington, DC, Office; HPIO
On December 7, the Senate approved the 21st Century Cures Act (HR 34) by a vote of 94 to 5. The House approved the bill on November 30 by a vote of 392 to 26. The legislation has been championed as a way to speed up drug development and includes provisions to promote precision medicine and varied medical innovations. HR 34 provides $2.8 billion to the National Institutes of Health over 10 years, $430 million for U.S. Food and Drug Administration reform, and $6.3 billion for the Biden Cancer Moonshot Initiative.
It is also the most significant piece of mental health legislation since the 2008 mental health parity law as it includes the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act (HR 2646) which would improve primary care and mental health integration, strengthen mental health parity, and require new HIPAA mental health guidance.
The American Academy of Family Physicians weighed in on key provisions, including language to improve health information technology interoperability. The president is expected to sign the 990-page bill soon.