Today, United States House of Representatives passed by voice vote the Improving Seniors’ Timely Access to Care Act (H.R. 3173/S. 3018), legislation spearheaded by Powers-led Regulatory Relief Coalition (RRC).  Just prior to the bill’s passage on the House floor, it was advanced by unanimous vote out of the House Energy and Commerce committee following passage in July by the House Ways and Means committee.

This important legislative effort is the result of several years of coalition-building, legislative counsel, and congressional lobbying orchestrated by Powers attorney’s Peggy Tighe and Diane Millman. RRC is a group of national physician specialty organizations and their allies advocating for reduced regulatory burdens in Medicare so physicians can spend more time treating patients. Tighe is RRC’s legislative strategist; Millman is RRC’s regulatory counsel.

The RRC has advanced this bipartisan, bicameral legislation to help protect patients from unnecessary delays in care by streamlining and standardizing prior authorization in the Medicare Advantage (MA) program. The bill was championed in the House by Reps. Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Mike Kelly (R-PA), Ami Bera, MD (D-CA), and Larry Bucshon, MD (R-IN). In the Senate, the bill’s main sponsors are Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), John Thune (R-SD), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). They are working to advance this legislation this year in the Senate to protect patients from unnecessary delays in care.

Passage of this bipartisan bill in the House was propelled by more than 320 co-sponsors and over 500 endorsing organizations representing patients, health care providers, medical technology and biopharmaceutical industry, health plans and others seeking to ensure that bureaucratic hurdles do not stand in the way of physicians providing medically necessary patient care. A recently released report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General verified that some Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are inappropriately delaying and denying care serving as an additional catalyst for the legislation.

To learn more about the Regulatory Relief Coalition, you may visit the following website page. For more information about healthcare policy and advocacy, Peggy Tighe can be reached at Peggy.Tighe@PowersLaw.com or 202-875-6752.

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