Frelinghuysen Hails Passage of Cures Act

Frelinghuysen Hails Passage of Cures Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Declaring it a potential opportunity to ‘turn the corner’ on cancer, pediatric disease and mental illness, U.S. Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11) today praised bipartisan House passage of the 21st Century Cures Act.

“Diseases do not discriminate, and just about everyone knows somebody who has been stricken with a serious debilitating or deadly illness. Innovation and technological advances that increase productivity and our quality of life can also deliver more hope to patients and their families,” said Frelinghuysen.  We can all agree that America must renew and update our health care research and maintain our global leadership in medical innovation. This bill is a strong step forward.”

The 21st Century Cures Act provides $4.8 billion in new, fully paid for funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to aid in cures development, including funding for the "Cancer Moonshot."  The bill encourages personalized medicine to find best treatments, incentivizes the development of drugs for childhood diseases, removes barriers for research collaboration, puts patients at the heart of the regulatory review process, and improves and strengthens Medicare to increase access for seniors to quality, affordable health care.

In addition, this package of legislation encompasses sweeping mental health reforms to strengthen the nation's mental health workforce, improve mental health care for children or adults with serious mental illness.  The measure establishes the National Mental Health and Substance Use Poly Lab to drive evidence-based grant making, which can lead to new, successful treatments and approaches to a range of mental illnesses. 

“Today, it takes 15 years for a new drug to move from the laboratory to the local pharmacy,” said Frelinghuysen. "That’s unacceptable and one of the reasons passage of the 21st Century Cures Act, is so important." 

“I was pleased to vote for the legislation when it passed the House today by a strong bipartisan vote of 392-26.” The bill now must be approved by the Senate before President Obama has the opportunity to sign it into law.