On November 29, 2016, the US House of Representatives passed the 21st Century Cures Act ("Cures Act"); subsequently, on December 7, 2016, the US Senate passed the Cures Act. On December 13, 2016, President Obama signed the Cures Act, making it public law number 114-255.
The purpose of the the Cures Act is to accelerate the discovery, development, and delivery of new drugs and medical devices, while increasing consumer access to various treatments. Further, it intends to reform mental health treatment and fund research into brain injuries and Alzheimer's.
The $6.3 billion Cures Act package will give $4.8 billion over 10 years to National Institutes of Health programs, including the Cancer Moonshot effort. (Click on Cures Act image to read more.)
The Cures Act will also provide $500 million to the Food and Drug Administration ("FDA"), charging the FDA with implementing new procedures for speedier drug and device approvals. (More updates to follow.)
Finally, $1 billion will be provided to combat the opioid epidemic, which is considered to be at alarming levels within several US states.