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Quality and Affordable Health Care

"Like most Vermonters, I believe affordable access to quality health care is a fundamental right of all Americans. My work on this critical issue – in Vermont and now in Congress – has long been guided by three principles: everyone must be covered, everyone must contribute based upon his or her ability to pay, and coverage need not be related to employment. I will continue to push for comprehensive reform of our health care system to achieve quality, affordable care for all Vermonters and all Americans. And I will continue to bring Vermont’s values and successes in improving health care to the national stage."

 

Spotlight on Health Care

In November 2009, the House passed historic health care reform legislation. As a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, Rep. Welch incorporated several Vermont ideas into the legislation. Rep. Welch helped author a provision of the bill to create a pilot program that promotes Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), which rewards the quality and efficiency of care, rather than the volume and intensity of services.  Building on these important reforms is necessary to reduce the rate at which health care costs are growing. He also successfully worked to allow young people through the age of 26 to remain on their parents’ health plans, and repeal the health insurance industry’s exemption from anti-trust regulations.

Today, Rep. Welch is continuing to fight to reduce health care costs, improve the quality of services, and increase access. He currently leads bills in the House that would expand the use of telehealth services, provide crucial support for rural health care providers, and reduce the cost of prescription drugs by requiring the federal government to negotiate prescription drug prices with pharmaceutical companies.

More on Quality and Affordable Health Care

April 19, 2018 Press Release

WASHINGTON (THURSDAY, April 19, 2018) – Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), joined by Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.), announced a $792,000 grant to bring the medical records system at the Vermont Veterans’ Home in Bennington into the 21st century.  The grant meets a longstanding priority of the Bennington facility and was made possible by new funding for veterans in the bipartisan budget agreement reached by Congress in February.  Leahy, Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, played a leading role in those negotiations.

April 6, 2018 In The News

A consortium of organizations creating a plan to address opioid addiction in the county was an idea that took hold during a roundtable discussion attended by U.S. Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vermont.

The congressman met here Wednesday with about two dozen service providers, law enforcement and health officials, recovering addicts and others, saying he wanted to hear about local programs and how the pending availability of federal funding could help those efforts.

April 3, 2018 In The News

Vermont Congressman Peter Welch is praising a new, $3.3 billion federal commitment to fight opioid addiction, but he’s criticizing House leadership for not allowing the chamber to vote on substantive gun safety measures.

Welch, a Democrat in his sixth term in the U.S. House, shared his views on those and other subjects during an interview at the Addison Independent on Thursday. Welch was in Addison County to visit the BristolWorks industrial park and participate in a roundtable discussion in Middlebury about the impacts of opioid addiction.

January 11, 2018 Press Release

WASHINGTON – In an Oval Office ceremony late yesterday, President Trump signed into law legislation cosponsored by Rep. Welch (D-VT) that will stem the illegal flow of fentanyl and other synthetic opioids across the U.S. border. Additionally, Welch has introduced bipartisan legislation to fund non-addictive alternatives to the use of opioids for pain treatment.

December 1, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON - Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) has joined Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) in introducing legislation that would boost funding for critical medical research. The bill would pay for the new research by requiring large pharmaceutical companies that break the law and settle their cases to reinvest a percentage of their profits into medical research conducted by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  

October 25, 2017 Press Release

WASHNGTON –  Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Reps. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) today introduced legislation to require the federal government to leverage its bulk purchasing power to negotiate lower Medicare drug prices for seniors.

October 13, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) issued the following statement in response to President Trump’s decision to end the cost-sharing reduction payments required under the Affordable Care Act.

August 21, 2017 In The News

U.S. House Democrats said on Thursday they were launching an investigation into why prices for Multiple Sclerosis (MS) treatments have nearly quintupled since 2004, and they sent letters requesting information from seven drugmakers.

U.S. Representatives Elijah Cummings and Peter Welch sent the letters to Bayer AG, Biogen Inc, Merck KGaA's EMD Serono unit, Novartis AG, Roche Holding AG, Sanofi SA, and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Inc.

August 17, 2017 Press Release

Washington, D.C. (August 17, 2017)—Today, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and Rep. Peter Welch of Vermont, a senior Democrat on both the Oversight Committee and the Committee on Energy and Commerce, sent letters to seven pharmaceutical companies requesting information about their pricing strategies for drugs used to treat Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

August 2, 2017 In The News

Following the failure by Senate Republican leaders to repeal the Affordable Care Act last week, a group of 40 House members, including 20 Democrats and 20 Republicans, has emerged with a proposal to help strengthen the health care law.

Rep. Peter Welch says it's critical for Democrats to admit, right at the start, that there are certain parts of the law that need to be changed.