The 113th Congress is off to a busy start, taking swift action on a couple of kid-friendly bills.
Just nine days ago we posted about the introduction of bills in the House of Representatives to reauthorize the Children’s Hospital Graduate Medical Education (CHGME) program and authorize the National Institutes of Health to facilitate the creation of pediatric research consortia. The bills were both passed unanimously this week by the House Energy and Commerce Committee. While they still need to be passed by the FULL House of Representatives (not to mention be introduced and passed in the Senate), this quick start bodes well for children’s health care.
CHGME bill (H.R. 297) sponsors Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Joe Pitts (R-PA) as along with Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Bob Latta (R-OH) spoke in support of the program, citing how important it is to the health care needs of children. The bill now has 24 cosponsors.
Reps. Pallone (D-NJ), Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Lois Capps (D-CA) spoke in strong support of the National Pediatric Research Network Act (NPRNA), which now has 11 cosponsors.
Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) signaled he intends to get both bills to the House floor for a vote as soon as possible. We’ll keep you posted.
In the meantime, the CHGME program still needs to be funded. President Obama’s budget will be released next month, and you still have time to send him an email urging him to fully fund the program in 2014.