HEALTHCARE INFORMATION: HHS Chief Lawyer Defending Vaccination Mandates

The new Chief Lawyer for the Department of Health and Human Services will face thousands of high-level legal challenges that test the limits of the agency’s mandate as it addresses new threats to public health through an unprecedented policy.

The Senate on Thursday approved the appointment of Samuel Bagenst as Advocate General by 49 votes to 43. He will defend the agency from litigation over vaccine mandates, efforts to cut unexpected medical bills, and reduced payments to hospitals participating in the federal drug rebate program.

The experience of Bagensta’s predecessors highlights the challenges that the HHS Advocate General may face, including the implementation of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Affordable Care Act and 9/11.

“Each of us probably started with some vision of what we wanted to do,” he said Robert Carrow, who was General Counsel for the Trump Administration and is now a shareholder in Greenberg Traurig LLP. “Every vision of ours has been shattered by some catastrophe.” Read more from Allie Reed.

Going on the Mountain

The chief senator seeks to link mental health to a weapon: The head of the influential Senate Finance Committee wants to include Medicaid and telemedicine policies in the bilateral weapons package under discussion, possibly speeding up the deadline for passing key mental health legislation. Alex Ruoff reports.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) Told reporters on Thursday that it intends to expand tele-mental health coverage and support Medicaid as part of a violent weapons package. He did not provide details, but drew attention to a policy previously published by members of Finance.

“There is an opportunity to address the issue of mental health in a valuable way in the next few weeks,” Wyden said.

The Finance Committee has tried to improve bilateral mental health laws this year by issuing a number of policy recommendations that could possibly be approved by the Senate. In May, Wyden and Sen. Mike’as Crapo (R-Ind.) Has issued recommendations on how to expand the coverage of Medicare and Medicaid telemedicine services.

If this policy were to come into the arms violence package, it would mean legislation originally scheduled for later this year would be faster, Wyden said.

The asbestos ban bill is criticized for the need to produce chlorine: At a Senate sitting on Thursday, a controversy arose between legislation aimed at reducing the deadly effects of asbestos and concerns that a bill banning the chemical could increase the cost of drinking water and hamper the manufacture of medicines.

Asbestos is used to make chlorine used to disinfect drinking water. Chlorine can be produced in other ways, but the bill’s requirement to phase out asbestos imports over two years would reduce chlorine supplies and increase costs, Robert J. Simmon, vice president of the American Chemical Council, told the Senate Environment and Society Committee. Meeting of the Subcommittee on Works on Alan Reinstein’s ban on asbestos in 2022 law (S.4244). Even Rizzuto has more.

What else to know

Drug manufacturers call on appellate court to limit off-the-shelf discounts: Drug manufacturers should be allowed to limit the large discounts they offer outside pharmacies under a federal program to help low-income patients purchase drugs, two pharmaceutical companies told the DC Circuit.

The consolidated lawsuit filed by Novartis Pharmaceuticals and United Therapeutics is one of a number of challenges posed by drug manufacturers to the Department of Health and Human Services. Allie Reed destroys the box.

June 16 FTC to weigh discounts on drug AI – online harm control: On Thursday, the agency announced that an open meeting of the Federal Trade Commission would be held on June 16 at 1 p.m. ET. The Commission will vote on a policy statement on rebates and fees paid by pharmaceutical companies to pharmacovigilance managers and other intermediaries in exchange for making them unfavorable to cheaper medicines. read more.

Highest value contract options: Bloomberg Government Introduces Potential New Business to Federal Contractors Opportunities range from the $ 89 billion limit for managing the Frederick Cancer Research Laboratory to the $ 2.5 billion U.S. ID Comprehensive Technical Assistance Health Supply Chain and Pharmaceutical Management (COMP TA) contract. Read more from Paul Murphy.

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To contact a journalist about this story: Giuseppe Macri Washington hrs gmacri@bgov.com

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