The White House is expected to roll out the health care priorities for its two-part infrastructure package sometime this Spring, and the health piece potentially could move separately now that the Senate parliamentarian has agreed Democrats have another shot passing their priorities through a simple majority. While there appears to be consensus that the bill will expand, or make permanent, the Affordable Care Act tax credits from the American Rescue Plan, other policies are less clear and will likely depend on the amount of offsets lawmakers can glean from drug-pricing measures.
Pelosi: Drug Pricing May Pay For Health Care Pieces Of Infrastructure Bill
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said everything is on the table for the next legislative package that is expected to focus on infrastructure improvements and include health care provisions like a permanent increase to the Affordable Care Act tax credits — and she said the package likely will be paid for by tackling prescription drug prices.
...Pelosi said including House Democrats’ drug pricing bill, H.R.3, would pay for $500 billion of the cost of the infrastructure bill, part of which could be used to boost ACA tax credits and make ACA coverage more affordable. The savings also could also be used for other health-related efforts, she said. For example, House Energy & Commerce Chair Frank Pallone (D-NJ) has been working with Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-SC) to expand community health centers and to improve broadband services, which would support telehealth.
As noted a few days ago, House Democrats have officially scheduled a floor vote on H.R. 3, the Lower Drug Costs Act of 2019, for next week:
Pelosi, Hoyer, Pallone, Neal and Scott Joint Statement Announcing Floor Vote on H.R. 3
Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone Jr., Ways & Means Committee Chairman Richard E. Neal and Education & Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott released the following joint statement:
“Next week, the House of Representatives will pass the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act.
“We have now received enough guidance from CBO to bring the Lower Drug Costs Now Act to the Floor and to reinvest its savings in one of the most transformational improvements to Medicare since its creation.