152nd Edition

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152nd EditionJune 22, 2023

Federal Affairs

On June 20, Dr. Carlos del Rio, School of Medicine Interim Dean, presented Congressman Buddy Carter (R-GA) with an Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) Award for his antimicrobial resistance efforts, including supporting key federal research and surveillance efforts. 

Appropriations Update  

Despite enactment of a recent debt ceiling agreement, the House and Senate are at odds over FY2024 federal funding levels. The House Appropriations Committee, at the direction of Speaker Kevin McCarthy, has passed a spending framework at FY2022 levels -- $120 billion below the levels set out in the debt ceiling deal. Meanwhile, the Senate is hoping to pass its’ spending bills in accordance with the agreement, leaving the House with the choice of higher spending levels or a government shutdown. While the OGCA team continues to advocate for federal funding bills that encompass the full fiscal year (as opposed to short-term continuing resolutions), we are concerned about the rising likelihood of a government shutdown come October 1. 

PAHPA Update   

Tensions rose this week in the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee concerning legislation meant to ensure the U.S. can respond to future pandemics and other national threats. Democrats are advancing new authorities for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that they argue are necessary to ensure the rapid identification and response to drug and medical device shortages. Republicans have countered that those new authorities are outside the bill’s scope. OGCA is closely monitoring the subcommittee’s efforts on the Pandemic and All-Hazardous Preparedness Act (PAHPA). Emory is supportive of the PAHPA legislation and is particularly interested in ways to strengthen the public-private partnership between the federal government and academic health centers.  

College Cost Legislation 

Last week, Senate Republicans unveiled a package of bills they say will rein in college cost and student debt. The Lowering Education Costs and Debt Act, a collection of five bills, would prevent colleges and universities from accessing federal financial aid for their students if program graduates lack clear earnings thresholds. It would streamline repayment options, require some loan counseling, improve transparency to provide better information, standardize student aid offers and limit graduate school borrowing, among other provisions. OGCA continues to work with Emory’s Office of Financial Aid to educate Members of Congress about the facts related to college cost and Emory’s commitment to reducing undergraduate loan debt.

State Affairs

On June 13, the Senate Study Committee on Certificate of Need (CON) Reform, chaired by Senator Greg Dolezal, convened for the first of four meetings at the State Capitol. The committee heard testimony from Josselyn Hill of the Georgia Research Office, Dr. Thomas Stratmann of George Mason University, and Anna Adams and Keri Conley of Georgia Hospital Association (GHA). Emory has been working as part of GHA’s CON workgroup to compile a list of recommended changes to the CON program, as well as other healthcare infrastructure programs, to present to both the Senate and House CON study committees. These proposed solutions will be offered to the study committees once finalized. The committee’s next meeting will be held in Columbus sometime in August. The State Affairs team will continue to attend all meetings.

Community Affairs

Alter Dementia Program 

On June 21, Dr. Fayron Epps, Associate Professor at the School of Nursing, and founder of the Alter Dementia Program shared information about the program with staff and community leaders. The Alter program guides and equips African American places of worship to become trailblazing dementia-friendly faith communities by providing valuable tools and resources.


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