7:25 PM
Mar 13, 2018
 |  BC Extra  |  Politics & Policy

Right-to-try bill stalls in House

Republicans could not muster sufficient votes to push right-to-try legislation through the House of Representatives Tuesday night. Republican leadership introduced the Trickett Wendler, Frank Mongiello, Jordan McLinn, and Matthew Bellina Right to Try Act of 2018 (H.R. 5247) under a fast-track procedure that requires a two-thirds majority. The bill received 259 votes in favor, while 140 House members, almost all Democrats, opposed the measure.

Republicans will continue to try to pass the bill, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said.

The bill had been modified in response to feedback from FDA. Changes include a narrowing of eligibility criteria and increased requirements for adverse event reporting (see BioCentury Extra, March 12).

Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) celebrated the bill’s defeat.

“By defeating this bill tonight, we protected patients and supported FDA’s continued role in approving experimental treatments that may help save a patient’s life,” Pallone said.

H.R. 5247 was opposed by a broad range of patient advocacy groups and medical societies, including the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) and the American Cancer Society.

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