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Biomedical Research Legislation

This page provides summaries of legislation proposed in the 116th Congress affecting biomedical research policy. This page will be updated as relevant legislation is introduced.

Medical Innovation Act of 2020 (S. 3163)

  • The legislation was introduced by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) on 1/8/20. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. 
  • The bill would authorize the HHS Secretary to collect supplemental payments to increase congressional investments in medical research.  Amounts would be distributed to FDA and NIH for research that fosters radical innovation, research related to diseases that disproportionally account for Federal health care spending, research that advances fundamental knowledge and technology, and early career scientists.

National Biomedical Research Act (H.R. 5400, S. 3161)

  • The legislation was introduced by Rep. Yvette Clark (D-NY) on 12/11/19 in the House by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) on 1/8/20 in the Senate. 
  • The legislation would establish a Biomedical Innovation Fund in the Treasury Department whose funds would be transferred to the NIH & FDA.  $10M would be transferred to the agencies each year and would be used to support basic research as well as research that fosters disruptive innovations. 

Biomedical Innovation Expansion Act of 2019 (H.R. 4667)

  • The legislation was introduced by Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ) on 10/11/19. The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy & Commerce. 
  • The legislation would reauthorize the 21st Century Cures Act, signed into law in December 2016, and provide support for all current NIH Innovation Fund activities to 2030. Specifically, the bill would provide the Beau Biden Cancer Moonshot with $216M for FY 2014- FY 3030.

Pediatrics Accelerate Childhood Therapies Act of 2019 (H.R. 4519, S. 3023)

  • The legislation was introduced by Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) on 9/26/19 in the House and by Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) on 12/11/19 in the Senate. The bill was referred to Committee on Energy & Commerce in the House and the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions in the Senate.
  • The bill would authorize the NIH Director to make awards to outstanding scientists, including physician-scientists, to support researchers focusing on pediatric research, including childhood cancer, for basic, clinical, translational, or pediatric pharmacological research. The bill would also create a Trans-NIH Pediatric Research Consortium.

Liver Illness Visibility, Education, and Research Act of 2019 (H.R. 3016)

  • The legislation was introduced by Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY) on 5/23/19 in the House and Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) on 12/19//19 in the Senate; it was also introduced in the 115th Congress by Rep. Velazquez. The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy & Commerce.
  • The bill includes provisions directed toward NCI, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases aimed at expanding research and public education efforts regarding liver cancer and other liver disease. The section of the bill directed toward NCI includes the following provisions:
    • Directs NCI to expand and intensify research on the etiology of liver cancer; clinical research related to liver cancer prevention, detection, and treatment; liver cancer control research, including a focus on underserved populations; and related public education efforts.
    • Directs NCI to issue targeted calls for liver cancer research proposals and establish a special emphasis panel to review such proposals.
    • Directs NCI to establish an inter-Institute working group to focus on liver cancer and related diseases, including Hepatitis B.

Combatting Sexual Harassment in Science Act of 2019 (H.R. 36, S. 1067)

  • The legislation was introduced by Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) on 1/3/19 in the House and Sen. Kamala Harris on 4/8/19 in the Senate.
  • The legislation would direct the National Science Foundation to fund research grants regarding sexual harassment in the science/STEM fields.
  • The bill also directs the Office of Science and Technology Policy to convene an interagency working group on the issue, which would include NIH representation.
  • H.R. 36 passed the House on 7/23/19. There has been no further action in the Senate.
  • Updated: