Hart Health Strategies provides a comprehensive policy briefing on a weekly basis. This in-depth health policy briefing is sent out at the beginning of each week. The health policy briefing recaps the previous week and previews the week ahead. It alerts clients to upcoming congressional hearings, newly introduced bills, regulatory announcements, and implementation activity related to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and other health laws.


Two-Year Budget Deal Passes Senate, Signed by President

The Senate passed a two-year bipartisan budget deal (H.R. 3877) to increase budget caps, raise the nation’s borrowing limit, and create a path to fiscal year (FY) 2020 government funding. The package was quickly signed into law by President Trump. The measure passed the Senate by a vote of 67-28, with 23 Republicans joining five Democrats in opposition to the bill. It would increase spending by $320 billion above current levels and lift the debt ceiling for two years; the bill also includes $77 billion in cuts and revenue raisers to help offset its cost. It adds $1.7 trillion to the deficit over the next ten years in comparison to the automatic spending cuts known as sequestration that would have otherwise taken place in the absence of an agreement. As part of the negotiations, lawmakers have agreed to not insert any poison pill policies into individual appropriations bills considered before the end of the fiscal year on September 30. The legislation had previously been agreed to by the House of Representatives. The House has already passed 10 spending bills, while the Senate Appropriations Committee plans to begin voting appropriations legislation when the Senate reconvenes early next month. Congress is in recess through the month of August and is scheduled to return after Labor Day on September 9.

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