(Washington, PA) Representative Charlie Dent (PA-15) hailed the strongly bipartisan passage of H.R. 6 the 21st Century Cures Act in the House today. This important bill passed by a vote of 344 to 77.

He released the following statement:

“Today’s bipartisan effort demonstrates that, when it comes to investing in medical research and technology, Congress can set aside its differences and do the right thing for the millions of people who are suffering from debilitating diseases. In this legislation, over the next 5 years we increase funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) by $8.75 billion and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by $500 million to find cures for the diseases that ravage our families such as cancer, Alzheimer’s and other life-threatening and quality of life-robbing ailments.

The 21st Century Cures Act will also get life-saving drugs and medical devices to patients in a much faster, but still medically safe manner. It currently takes about 15 years to bring a new drug from the lab setting to your local pharmacy. The reality of the current system is that people die while effective treatments or cures are tied up by overly burdensome, not medically necessary bureaucratic procedures.

The Cures Act also incentivizes research into the development of cures for rare diseases. There are many life-threatening disorders that affect only a few individuals across the country.  One of my constituents, a brave young woman named Brittany Sheaffer is such a person. She suffers from mucopolysaccharidosis or MPS, a rare genetic disorder that often ends the lives of those afflicted when they are only children. Against the odds, Brittany just recently celebrated her 22nd birthday. When we allocate funding to find cures, courageous people like Brittany and others who suffer from rare ailments must not be forgotten. The Cures Act makes sure that they won’t be.

The Cures Act showcases a strong bipartisan effort by the House to responsibly allocate the funding necessary to provide scientists, physicians and institutions with the means they need to conduct life-saving and life-improving medical research to benefit all Americans. I fervently hope the Senate speedily passes this vital bill.”

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Contact: Shawn Millan (610) 770-3490