Washington, D.C.– Today, Representatives Tom Emmer (MN-06) and Eric Swalwell (CA-15), co-chairs of the Personalized Medicine Caucus, introduced bipartisan legislation to better address drug-gene interactions to ensure that all Americans have access to the treatment that is best for them.
The Right Drug Dose Now Act will enable the use of evidence-based pharmacogenomic (PGx) testing to prevent adverse drug events and ensure that patients receive medications tailored to their genetic makeup. PGx is the study of how genes affect the body's response to certain medicines, which is critical to understanding how safe and effective a particular drug can be for each person.
“For too long, patients and providers have been reliant on a “test and see” approach to prescribing pharmaceuticals,” said Emmer. “At best, this method is imprecise, and at worst, risks harmful patient outcomes. Every person’s unique genetic make-up affects drug efficacy, absorption rate, dosage and as a result, patient safety. Pharmacogenomics gives providers the chance to fine-tune treatment and enables improved decision-making regarding prescription medications.”
The Right Drug Dose Now Act would update the Department of Health and Human Services’ National Action Plan for Adverse Drug Event Prevention, create an educational campaign to prevent adverse drug events, and improve electronic health record systems to ensure that healthcare providers are alerted to interactions between medications and genes when making prescribing decisions. The bill would also allocate additional funding to the Genomic Community Resources program at the National Institute of Health to better integrate PGx testing into patient care.
“PGx testing is a quickly evolving field of personalized medicine and this information is critical for the over 40 million Americans taking more than five medications daily,” said Swalwell. “Patients and medical professionals must understand their potential uses to make informed treatment decisions that are best for each individual patient.”
This legislation is supported by the Personalized Medicine Coalition, American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics, Invitae, Association for Managed Care Pharmacy, American Society of Pharmacovigilance, Genomind, OneOme, GenXys, Sanford Imagenetics, and the GTMRx Institute.
You can read the text of the bill here.