The House passed the final version of a bill that will reauthorize federal programs to develop medical countermeasures against chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear weapons. The vote was 370 to 28. The aim of the legislation is to ensure state and local governments, as well as hospitals and other medical providers, have the resources they need to prepare for and respond to an attack or pandemic outbreak. After passing the House the first time in January, the Senate amended the legislation by a unanimous vote. The President has now signed it. (H.R. 307)
Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI), Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and a senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, released the following statement regarding the passage of essential legislation to protect the future of America's public health preparedness infrastructure:
“With an overwhelming majority of Congress supporting this important legislation, I applaud Chairman Upton, Ranking Member Waxman, Chairman Harkin and Senator Burr for their leadership and bipartisan support of this bill,” said Rogers. “This legislation will save lives by improving our ability to quickly respond to a bioterror attack or pandemic outbreak. It was developed after years of careful deliberation between leaders in the House and Senate. I’m proud Congress did its job and worked together to develop a fiscally-responsible, bipartisan plan to protect Americans from a bioterror attack."