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LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

September 2006


Appropriations
Diseases of the Heart, Lungs, Blood, or Blood Vessels
  • Tuberculosis Elimination Act of 2006 (H.R. 5836)
  • Home Oxygen Patient Protection Act of 2006 (H.R. 5513)
  • National Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Awareness Week (S.Res. 236 and H.Con.Res. 178)
  • National Peripheral Arterial Disease Awareness Week (S.Res. 556)
Nutrition and Obesity
  • Menu Education and Labeling (MEAL) Act (H.R. 5563 and S. 3484)
  • Improved Nutrition and Physical Activity (IMPACT) Act (H.R. 5698)
  • Stop Obesity in Schools Act of 2006 (H.R. 5938)
  • Bodegas as Catalysts for Healthy Living Act (H.R. 5952)
Stem Cell Research
  • Fetus Farming Prohibition Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-242)
  • Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2006 (H.R. 810 and S. 471)
  • Alternative Pluripotent Stem Cell Therapies Enhancement Act (S. 2754 and H.R. 5526)
Protection of Research Participants
  • Protection for Participants in Research Act of 2006 (H.R. 5578)
  • Safe Overseas Human Testing Act (H.R. 5641)

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Appropriations

The House and Senate Committees on Appropriations have approved bills that would fund the NHLBI in fiscal year 2007. Consistent with the President's request, H.R. 5647 would provide $2,901,012,000 for the NHLBI. The Senate version (S. 3708) includes $2,924,299,000 for the NHLBI, an increase of 0.09 percent over the $2,921,757,000 that the NHLBI received for fiscal year 2006. The next step of the appropriations process entails convening a conference committee that will reconcile the two versions of the bill. Both chambers must then approve the revised bill before it can be forwarded to the President to be signed into law.

Reports accompanying the House and Senate bills (House Report 109-515 and Senate Report 109-287) mention a variety of NHLBI interests including
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
  • Cooley's anemia.
  • Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
  • heart disease.
  • lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM).
  • lymphatic diseases.
  • Marfan syndrome.
  • neurofibromatosis.
  • pulmonary hypertension.
  • sleep disorders.
  • weight gain and obesity.
The House report also emphasizes the importance of research addressing
  • cystic fibrosis.
  • bleeding disorders.
  • thrombophilia.
Other Senate language encourages the NHLBI to continue studying
  • alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency.
  • congenital heart disease.
  • Diamond-Blackfan anemia.
  • hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT).
  • juvenile (type 1) diabetes.
  • pulmonary fibrosis.
  • temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.
  • tuberous sclerosis complex.

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Diseases of the Heart, Lungs, Blood, or Blood Vessels

Tuberculosis Elimination Act of 2006

Number: H.R. 5836
Sponsor: Representative Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
Referred to: House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
Highlights: Would require the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to make grants for research and demonstration projects, prevention activities, and education and training programs with the goal of preventing tuberculosis infections. It also would require the NHLBI, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and John E. Fogarty International Center for Advanced Study in the Health Sciences to enhance their TB programs, and would establish an NIH loan-repayment program for researchers studying TB.

Home Oxygen Patient Protection Act of 2006

Number: H.R. 5513
Sponsor: Representative Joe Schwarz (R-MI)
Referred to: House Committees on Energy and Commerce and on Ways and Means
Highlights: Would provide Medicare coverage for long-term (i.e., more than 36 months) rental of oxygen equipment by people who have chronic lung diseases.

A resolution recognizing the need to pursue research into the causes, treatment, and eventual cure for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and supporting the goals and ideals of National Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Awareness Week

Numbers: S.Res. 236 and H.Con.Res. 178
Sponsors: Senator Norm Coleman (R MN) and Representative Charlie Norwood (R-GA)
Latest actions: The Senate passed S.Res. 236 on May 25, 2006. The House of Representatives passed their resolution on September 29, 2005.

A resolution supporting National Peripheral Arterial Disease Awareness Week and efforts to educate people about peripheral arterial disease

Number: S.Res. 556
Sponsor: Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID)
Latest action: Passed by the Senate (August 3).

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Nutrition and Obesity

Menu Education and Labeling (MEAL) Act

Numbers: H.R. 5563 and S. 3484
Sponsors: Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)
Referred to: House Committee on Energy and Commerce and Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
Highlights: Would require chain restaurants and vending machines to post nutritional information about their products.

Improved Nutrition and Physical Activity (IMPACT) Act

Number: H.R. 5698
Sponsor: Representative Mary Bono (R-CA)
Referred to: House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
Highlights: Like its companion measure S. 1325, which was introduced by Senator William Frist (R-TN) and referred in 2005 to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, H.R. 5698 would require the CDC, in coordination with other DHHS components including the NIH, to award grants to provide health services for improved nutrition, increased physical activity, and prevention of obesity and eating disorders.

Stop Obesity in Schools Act of 2006

Number: H.R. 5938
Sponsor: Representative Nita Lowey (D-NY)
Referred to: House Committees on Education and the Workforce and on Energy and Commerce.
Highlights: Would require the CDC to make grants to local governments to implement and evaluate programs to address childhood obesity.

Bodegas as Catalysts for Healthy Living Act

Number: H.R. 5952
Sponsor: Representative Nydia Velazquez (D-NY)
Referred to: House Committees on Energy and Commerce, Small Business, and Ways and Means.
Highlights: Would require the Small Business Administration to provide grants to assist small, local grocery or convenience stores (bodegas) in expanding their inventories to include fresh fruits and vegetables, fruit juices, or low-fat products. The bill also would provide Medicare and Medicaid coverage of services, such as exercise or cooking classes, to prevent or treat obesity and obesity-related diseases.

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Stem Cell Research

Fetus Farming Prohibition Act of 2006

Number: P.L. 109-242 (formerly S. 3504 and H.R. 5719)
Enrolled on: July 19
Highlights: Prohibits soliciting or receiving donations of human fetal tissue if "a human pregnancy was deliberately initiated to provide such tissue." The law also prohibits receiving or accepting tissues or cells "obtained from a human embryo or fetus that was gestated in the uterus of a nonhuman animal."

Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act of 2006

Numbers: H.R. 810 and S. 471
Sponsors: Representative Michael Castle (R-DE) and Senator Arlen Specter (R PA)
Recent actions: Following passage by both chambers (Senate: July 17, 2006; House: May 25, 2005), the measure was vetoed by the President on July 19. The House failed to override the veto by a vote of 235-193 (July 19).
Highlights: Would have permitted federal support for research using human embryonic stem cells,
regardless of the date of derivation, as long as
  • the cell lines were derived from embryos created for fertility treatments.
  • the embryos were not needed for fertility treatments and would otherwise be discarded.
  • the individuals seeking fertility treatments donated the embryos for research with written informed consent and without receiving any financial or other inducements to make the donation.

Alternative Pluripotent Stem Cell Therapies Enhancement Act

Numbers: S. 2754 and H.R. 5526
Sponsors: Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) and Representative Roscoe Bartlett (R MD)
Referred to: Passed in Senate by a vote of 100-0, but failed in the House (July 18).
Highlights: Would require the NIH to fund research to develop techniques for the isolation and production of cells that, like embryonic stem cells, can produce a wide variety of cell types. The stem cells that would be studied, however, would not come from human embryos.

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Protection of Research Participants

Protection for Participants in Research Act of 2006

Number: H.R. 5578
Sponsor: Representative Diana DeGette D-CO)
Referred to: House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
Highlights: Would require the DHHS to take steps to reconcile differences between the human subject protections provisions in titles 21 and 45 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Safe Overseas Human Testing Act

Number: H.R. 5641
Sponsor: Representative Tom Lantos (D-CA)
Referred to: House Committee on International Relations.
Highlights: Would hold clinical research protocols of drugs (or other test materials) exported from the United States to the same standards as would be required if the studies were conducted in the United States.

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Content last modified: 8/11/2006
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[Legislative Update (May 2006)]
NHLBI Express






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