On December 13, 2016, President Barack Obama today signed H.R. 34, the 21st Century Cures Act, into law. This sweeping healthcare law addresses the discovery, development and delivery of new drugs and medical treatments. It also includes substantial mental health reforms and assorted Medicare- and Medicaid-related provisions.
The law is a product of the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Initiative, spearheaded by US House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) and Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO). The Initiative held various events and authored policy papers on topics such as innovating public health agencies, incorporating patient perspectives into the regulatory process, and improving medicine and medical product regulation. The House passed a first version of the bill in July 2015.