Washington, D.C. (May 26, 2015) –The Alliance for Healthcare Competitiveness (AHC) applauds Senators Dan Coats (R-IN) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) for their leadership in recognizing the importance of healthcare in trade negotiations. By introducing an amendment to the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) legislation calling for the creation of the dedicated senior healthcare official in the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), Senator Coats and Senator Klobuchar have helped to further efforts to support innovative, quality healthcare here in the United States and around the world, bringing together the wide range of interests and issues impacting the healthcare ecosystem through this important position.
The amendment filed last week will help to provide the support needed for our leadership to navigate the size and complexity of the health sector, maximizing its export potential and ensuring that the overall sector continues contributing to the economic growth of our country. This position will provide necessary expertise on trade issues related to healthcare, especially within trade negotiations, as well as coordinate policy with industry, other offices within USTR, and agencies in the U.S. government.
The health sector extends far beyond pharmaceuticals and medical devices to include everything from healthcare providers and health delivery to insurance and health IT systems. For the sector to realize its economic potential, trade agreements must address a range of issues including cross-border data flows, regulatory transparency provisions and government procurement, among other issues.
TPA represents a critical framework for ensuring that the U.S. trade agenda is robust and ambitious, and will pave the way for important trade agreements that improve access to life-saving medical goods and services for millions of patients, while creating jobs and growing the U.S. economy. TPA, which passed the Senate last week, will also help to ensure public input and Congressional oversight on U.S. trade negotiations, and will be a vital tool as Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations continue.
As a coalition of leading healthcare manufacturers, payers, service providers and non-profits that represent the entire health ecosystem, AHC applauds this important step forward in creating opportunities for the U.S. healthcare industry to share its remarkable life-saving products and services with patients around the world. While this amendment was not included in the final bill, AHC is pleased that healthcare in trade agreements has been elevated as an issue of particular importance, and we hope that other members of Congress will join to support such efforts moving forward.
About the Alliance for Healthcare Competitiveness
The Alliance for Healthcare Competitiveness (AHC), the only coalition calling for more open trade at the health sector level, advocates for improved access to healthcare products and services across borders, bringing together a diverse group of organizations that recognize the value of sector-wide collaboration and partnership. Our membership includes leading healthcare employers – both for-profit and non-profit, large and small – with a presence throughout the United States and in approximately 160 countries across the globe. AHC was formed in 2009.
The Alliance for Global Health and Competitiveness, LLC is a multi-stakeholder initiative (MSI) of the Business Council for Global Development, LLC.
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