Legislative Update – Week of February 13, 2023

Feb 14, 2023

Last week:

In DC, President Biden outlined his priorities in his State of the Union Address. The speech included the announcement of new policies that are intended to advance progress on his existing “four-part Unity Agenda,” which includes targeted investments to take on the mental health crisis, accelerate progress against cancer, deliver on commitments to veterans, and combat the opioid epidemic.

In Massachusetts, MassBio’s Zach Stanley was named a member of the Health Policy Commission’s (HPC) Advisory Council. The goal of the Advisory Council is to enhance the HPC’s robust policy agenda through discussion of the issues facing the Massachusetts health care market. These public meetings provide an opportunity for open dialogue and engagement among a cross-section group of health care industry stakeholders and policymakers, which informs the work of the agency. The HPC’s Advisory Council had their first meeting last week, where Executive Director David Seltz provided an update and discussed the commission’s 2023 priorities. 

The Massachusetts Senate passed Senate rules that will govern how the Senate operates during the 2023-2024 legislative session. The Senate debated and ultimately passed an amendment repealing the eight-year term limit on the position of Senate President.

Gus Bickford is stepping down as chair of the Massachusetts Democratic Party and is supporting Steve Kerrigan to take over the role. Governor Maura Healey said she is also supporting Steve Kerrigan. Bickford, who was first elected chair in 2016, will step down at the next state committee meeting in April.

This week:

In DC, the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee will hold a hearing, entitled “Examining Health Care Workforce Shortages: Where Do We Go From Here?” The hearing will be held on Thursday at 10:00 a.m.in 430 Dirksen Senate Office Building. 

In Massachusetts, on Wednesday, the Health Policy Commission holds virtual meetings of the Market Oversight and Transparency and Care Delivery Transformation committees. Access the live stream.

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