Washington, D.C. – Congressman Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX), a member of the House Rules Committee and Republican Leader of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health, released the following statement after the House voted to pass both of his Health and Human Services amendments.
"Today, the House took action on two bipartisan amendments,” said Burgess. “The first will be beneficial as we continue the fight against this novel Coronavirus because it will improve our domestic plasma manufacturing processes and capabilities.
"Plasma is in our bloodstream, and plasma donations have historically been in a shortage, but this pandemic has increased the demand. Plasma protein is a lifesaving therapeutic for many patients across the United States. It is critical that we invest in this lifesaving issue.
"The second amendment addresses an issue that I have been fighting for since before I came to Congress. It will increase the funding in Birth Defects, Developmental Disabilities, Disabilities and Health account at CDC for the purpose of increasing funding for the Public Health Approach to Blood Disorders, particularly sickle cell disease. This funding will enable the CDC to bolster its sickle cell disease surveillance efforts, helping them to identify patients and learn more about their health outcomes.
"Sickle cell patients know a unique kind of pain. I remember treating patients in the emergency room when I was a resident at Parkland Hospital in Dallas. For decades, the treatment options for these patients remained the same and they remained inadequate. There have been encouraging developments in the past 2 years, and we must continue to build on that momentum. Ensuring the CDC has adequate funding to carry out its sickle cell activities is critical.
"I appreciate the support my fellow members of Congress have shown for these two critical issues. I hope that we remain successful in bringing forth solutions for the American people."