Brooks unveils bipartisan Prescription for American Drug Independence Act
U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN) on May 1 introduced bipartisan legislation that would fund exploratory strategies designed to increase domestic drug manufacturing and diversify the nation’s drug supply chain.
“This bipartisan legislation will take rapid steps to ensure the United States has better visibility into our own pharmaceutical supply chain,” Rep. Brooks said on Friday.
The congresswoman signed on as the lead original cosponsor of the Prescription for American Drug Independence Act, H.R. 6670, with bill sponsor U.S. Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), which would require the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to convene a committee of experts to examine the U.S. drug supply chain, including the sourcing and manufacturing of drugs, according to a bill summary provided by Rep. Brooks’ office.
Additionally, the committee would be tasked with making recommendations to Congress within 90 days of the bill’s enactment to ensure that the United States has a diverse drug supply chain to adequately protect Americans during natural or hostile occurrences, according to the bill summary.
“The United States has long been dependent on foreign drug manufacturers with potentially severe consequences for our domestic supply chains and ingredients for components of our pharmaceutical products, especially during this pandemic,” said Rep. Brooks. “Whether we’ve experienced drug shortages or supply chain disruptions, we recognize there is a huge issue and Congress must work to fix it.”
In fact, Rep. Eshoo said that the U.S. currently is dependent on China for the key ingredients in antibiotics and blood pressure medications, and also depends on foreign manufacturing of generic drugs, which represents up to 90 percent of the prescriptions taken by Americans.
“The U.S. must have a national strategy to eliminate foreign dependence for critical drugs and with it, Congress can move quickly to act on the recommendations of the experts,” Eshoo said.
H.R. 6670 has been referred to the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee for consideration.