Washington Update

Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control Holds Hearing on Heroin and Prescription Drug Abuse

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On May 14, the Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control held a hearing prompted by the upswing in prescription drugs and heroin abuse.

Senate Likely to Approve Burwell to Head HHS

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Approval of Sylvia Mathews Burwell, President Obama’s nominee to head the Department of Health and Human Services, appears all but assured after a bipartisan group of senators on two key committees endorsed her nomination.

Congressional Resources - June 2014

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For those interested in following the congressional proceedings, please access the U.S. House or Senate by way of these links.

Supreme Court Rules on States’ Right to Prohibit Consideration of Race in Admissions

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On April 22, the United States Supreme Court issued an opinion in its ruling on Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action.  The Court’s decision upheld a constitutional amendment that Michigan voters approved to ban the consideration of race and gender in public education. The Michigan ballot initiative, known as Proposal 2, was passed in 2006 by 58 percent of voters.  

Primary Care Bill Would Expand Access to Dental Services

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Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has introduced a bill that would expand access to primary care through workforce initiatives, enhanced reimbursements and increased accountability for Graduate Medical Education (GME) funds.

Congress Shows Bipartisan Support for Title VII Programs

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Elected officials on both sides of the aisle have signaled their support for federal health care workforce programs as their colleagues on Capitol Hill gear up to begin work on appropriations bills for FY15.

Bills to Expand Biomedical Research Funding

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Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA), a senior member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, has introduced a bill that would increase U.S. investments in biomedical research. The Helping Encourage Advancements in Lifesaving Science or America HEALS Act would create a mandatory trust fund dedicated to supporting research at the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Department of Defense Health Program and the Veterans Medical & Prosthetics Research Program. The legislation would increase funding for these agencies and programs at a rate of GDP-indexed inflation plus 5% every year.

Affordable Care Act: Implementation Update

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As the deadline to sign up for health insurance coverage through the new federal and state marketplaces neared on March 31, a surge in enrollments carried the number of purchasers over the 6 million mark—inching closer to the Obama Administration’s initial target of 7 million. 

Congressional Resources

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For those interested in following the congressional proceedings, please access the U.S. House or Senate by way of the following links: U.S. House of Representatives: House website U.S. Senate: Senate website ADEA-AGR Twitter Account: ADEAAGR For the latest information on issues affecting dental education and dental and craniofacial research in Washington and the state legislatures, please follow us on Twitter at ADEAAGR. There is much to “tweet” about.

Congressional Budget Office Report Fuels ACA Debate

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A February 4 report by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) on the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on the U.S. labor market set off a firestorm on Capitol Hill when it estimated that by 2024 some 2.5 million Americans who would have previously counted on a job for their health insurance will no longer decide to work or will shorten their hours. 

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