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NEW: HELP Committee Unanimously Approves Shaheen-Led Bill to Lower Cost of Prescription Drugs, Bring Generic Medication to Market

**The bipartisan legislation increases competition and brings generic drugs to market to lower costs**

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), co-chair of the Senate Diabetes Caucus, announced that her bipartisan bill to lower Americans’ prescription drug costs unanimously cleared the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions today. Shaheen reintroduced the Ensuring Timely Access to Generics Act with Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Mike Braun (R-IN) earlier this year to increase competition for generic drugs by providing better oversight from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which would help to lower costs.

"Addressing the soaring costs of prescription medications remains a pressing issue for Granite Staters. I'm proud that my bipartisan legislation to reduce drug prices unanimously cleared a key committee hurdle today, bringing us one step closer towards realizing this goal," said Senator Shaheen, co-chair of the Senate Diabetes Caucus. "Members from both sides of the aisle are eager to find commonsense solutions to help curb these surging costs. By holding bad actors who exploit the petition process accountable and increasing competition, we can bring more prescription drugs to market and drive down costs for Americans. I urge Senate leadership to swiftly bring this bill to the floor for full consideration.”

Shaheen’s Ensuring Timely Access to Generics Act would work to increase competition from generic drugs through better oversight of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) citizen petition process. The citizen petition process allows interested stakeholders, including drug companies, to bring concerns to the FDA’s attention regarding pending applications. Currently, the process is being exploited by bad actors who file citizen petitions in order to delay the approval of generic competitors and extend their patent protections. This legislation ensures the FDA can reject citizen petitions if they believe its primary purpose is to delay the approval of an application, thereby increasing competition in the marketplace and lowering costs for patients.

Senator Shaheen has led efforts across the aisle to lower health care costs for Granite Staters and Americans. She leads bipartisan efforts in Congress with Senator Collins, as co-chairs of the Senate Diabetes Caucus, to roll back more than a decade of insulin price hikes. Last month, the pair introduced their bipartisan legislation, the Improving Needed Safeguards for Users of Lifesaving Insulin Now (INSULIN) Act of 2023, which would comprehensively address the skyrocketing costs of insulin, removing barriers to care and making it more accessible for millions more Americans.