January 29, 2024
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  • House Budget’s Health Care Task Force: An Incubator for New Ideas

          At the turn of the New Year, House Budget Committee Health Care Task Force (HCTF) Chair Rep. Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX) sat down with The Washington Post to give an overview of the Task Force goals for the upcoming year and the Committee’s reasons for establishing this panel. 

    See below for some highlights of Task Force Chair Burgess’ testimony. 

    Word on the Street Via Washington Post:

    • “…no matter where you are, health care is the key driver of debt, and national debt is a big headline at over $34 trillion and growing. But at the same time, as a doc, I know we’ve got to ensure patient access to care. I want to nail down access to those next-level cures that we all know are coming. So that’s the whole purpose in me spending energy in this realm.”  
    • “My biggest concern in the pharmaceutical world is that when you get a big breakthrough drug, it’s going to be expensive right out of the box, but downstream it’s going to deliver significant savings. So how do we reconcile what the cost is today with what the overall savings are going to be?”  
    • That’s where the Preventive Health Savings Act is going to begin to try to bridge that gap. We’ve had a hearing on the bill, we’ve put it through several iterations, and we’ve improved it. Watch this space, because we are going to be having a markup in the near future.”      
    • “There are a lot of other things we need to explore. One of the things that scares me to death is the Biden administration coming out and saying “You know what? For these new novel therapies that are very, very expensive, we are going to use our march-in rights and take the patents.
    • “This is not the right way to go. The task force is going to try to be an incubator for new ideas, which is a stark contrast to the Biden administration — they’re anti-innovation, anti-patient in so many ways.” 

    The Bottom Line:

    In August of 2023, House Budget Committee Chairman Jodey Arrington (R-TX) launched the Budget Committee Health Care Task Force and appointed Rep. Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX) as the chairman. 

    Screenshot 2024-01-29 at 11

    House Budget Chairman Jodey Arrington (Left) and Health Care Task Force Chairman Michael Burgess (Right) at the HCTF’s inaugural Member Roundtable: read more about that HERE

    The Task Force serves as a health policy incubator for the Budget Committee, examining key drivers of health care costs to the federal budget and proposals to reduce health care spending while working to modernize and personalize the health care system, support innovation, and increase patient access to quality and affordable care.

    The Task Force is guided by the principle that health care in America should be affordable, accessible, and personalized, while remaining focused on reducing long-term costs of health care to the Federal budget and patients.