Fair Shot Agenda Pillar: Safety, Health
Indiana is where we work, play, and live. Protecting our communities and ensuring the safety of each person is a top priority. I’m working to make sure our water is clean, our first responders are prepared, and our Hoosiers are healthy and safe.
I passed into law the Social Impact Partnerships to Pay for Results Act (S. 963) which empowers states, local governments, nonprofits, and the private sector to scale up evidence-based interventions that address our nation’s most pressing social and public health challenges. Because social impact partnerships are focused on achieving results, government money is only paid out when desired outcomes are met. In essence, this legislation brings pay-for-performance to the social and public health spheres, allowing the federal government to improve the impact and effectiveness of vital governmental services.
Too many American families have been hit with costly surprise medical bills at their most dire time of need. I, along with members of the Senate Bipartisan Working Group, introduced the bipartisan STOP Surprise Medical Bills Act (S. 1531) to protect patients from surprise medical bills.
At a time when Hoosiers are struggling to afford their prescription drugs, it is disheartening to see some pharmaceutical companies taking advantage of hardworking taxpayers through a loophole. I helped to introduce and pass into law the Fair and Accurate Medicaid Pricing (AMP) Act (S.1785) that would lose a loophole in the Medicaid rebate program that results in big pharmaceutical companies overcharging taxpayers. I also helped introduce the Strengthening Average Sales Price Reporting Act (S.2051) which would improve the accuracy of Medicare’s payments and protect beneficiaries and taxpayers from paying higher prices.
I cosponsored and fought for passage of the First Step Act, which will reduce recidivism by allowing low- or minimum-risk prisoners to earn time credits toward earlier transfer to prerelease custody such as a halfway house if they participate in certain recidivism-reducing programs while in prison.
Many Hoosiers remember the impacts the avian flu and the swine flu had on our communities across Indiana. To protect our families and our farm economy, I helped introduce the Advancing Emergency Preparedness Through One Health Act (S.1903) to advance a “One Health” approach—the idea that human and animal health are linked, and that they should be studied together—to improve public health preparedness to disease outbreaks.
I fought for victims of trafficking by cosponsoring the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2017 (S. 1312) to establish and reauthorize critical programs to prevent human trafficking, promote justice for survivors, provide services to victims, and increase federal coordination to enhance the federal government’s response to the crisis of exploitation.
I also cosponsored the bipartisan Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act (S. 1693) to eliminate federal liability protections to ensure there is no legal barrier to the prosecution of websites involved in sex trafficking. This bill would also provide victims of sex trafficking an avenue to take legal action against websites that knowingly allow a sex trafficking crime to be committed.
I believe responsible firearms owners play a key role in our community’s safety, and it is for this reason I helped introduce the Constitutional Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act (S. 69), which will protect the rights of Hoosier firearms owners by ensuring any individual who is properly registered in the State of Indiana for a concealed carry permit can transport or possess the firearm legally in other states without fear of prosecution by establishing reciprocity across similar state programs.
In order to combat the flow of illegal drugs into our communities, I helped introduce the Coast Guard Drug Detection and Interdiction Act (S. 2173), which expands the United States Coast Guard’s (USCG) use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) to help identify and interdict illicit drugs.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has as large role in keeping American consumers safe, and to ensure its best performance I co-led the FDA Reporting Transparency and Accountability Act (S. 1062), which would enhance performance reporting at the FDA.
Our local, state, and federal law enforcement officers and employees oftentimes undergo extremely stressful and traumatic events. In order to best care for them, I helped introduce and ensure passage of the bipartisan Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act (S. 998), to authorize grants to initiate peer mentoring pilot programs, direct DOJ and HHS to develop resources for mental health providers based on the specific mental health challenges faced by law enforcement, and support law enforcement officers by studying the effectiveness of crisis hotlines and annual mental health checks.
In order to preserve the ability of seniors to access medical care, I cosponsored the Protecting Seniors' Access to Medicare Act of 2017 (S. 260), which ended the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). IPAB was tasked with reducing per capita increases in Medicare spending, threatening the ability of seniors to access the healthcare they require.
I helped introduce the Right to Try Act (S. 204), which created a new pathway for patients with life-threatening illnesses to access investigational treatments.
I fought to protect the ability of diabetes patients who order their medical supplies in the mail to access vital supplies by cosponsoring the Protecting Access to Diabetes Supplies Act (S. 1914), which strengthens requirements for suppliers of mail order diabetes testing supplies (DTS), including testing strips, in order to ensure that individuals who use exclusive mail order DTS services are able to access testing strips.
I was the lead Republican sponsor of the Get the Lead Out of Assisted Housing Act of 2018 (S. 3492), which would help protect families from lead exposure by requiring the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to inspect for lead service lines, create a grant program to address lead contamination, and allow a cross-check for lead in water when remediating a home for lead found in paint.
I helped introduce the Protect Act (S. 1125), legislation that protects Americans with pre-existing conditions, ensuring that Americans have the peace of mind knowing that they and their loved ones will never be denied health care coverage or be charged more because of a pre-existing condition.
In order to provide Medicare beneficiaries more timely access to needed therapies, I helped introduce and was the lead Republican cosponsor of the Medicare Home Health Flexibility Act of 2019 (S. 1725), which breaks down barriers for senior care by allowing occupational therapists to perform an initial home assessment in certain cases. This would benefit patients in places where physical, occupational, and speech therapy is limited.
I am the lead Republican cosponsor of the bipartisan Beneficiary Enrollment Notification and Eligibility Simplification (BENES) Act (S. 1280), which would eliminate needless gaps in health care coverage and help prevent lifetime, late-enrollment penalties.
I am the lead Republican cosponsor of the Lymphedema Treatment Act (S. 518), which would increase and improve care for Medicare beneficiaries with lymphedema by requiring Medicare Part B to cover physician-prescribed compression therapy garments, which are essential in the effective treatment of lymphedema.
In too many cases, barriers to procuring a life-saving organ transplant create life or death situations. To combat this, I introduced the Organ Procurement Optimization Act (S. 2063), which would require that federal regulators determine annually whether an Organ Procurement Organization has performed well enough to have its federal contract recertified, as they do for nursing homes.
A shortage of nurses in many communities is creating a ripple effect of insufficient care for patients. I’m fighting against this through my Nursing Where It’s Needed (Nursing WIN) Act (S. 1045), bipartisan legislation that would address the high demand for qualified nurses in underserved areas by allowing nurses at health care facilities with critical nursing shortages to access certain loan repayment programs.
To better serve patients with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), I introduced the bipartisan Dialysis PATIENTS Demonstration Act of 2017 (S. 2065) to establish an ESRD Integrated Care Demonstration Program within Medicare to deliver high-quality, integrated, and coordinated care to ESRD patients within the dialysis clinic setting.
To support the use of evidence to support mental health care, introduced the Testing, Evaluating, and Strengthening Treatments (TEST) Act (S. 2626) to incorporate a “tiered evidence” design within the National Mental Health and Substance Use Policy Laboratory to allow for the scaling up of evidence-based approaches while concurrently supporting field-generated innovations.
I cosponsored the PREEMIE Reauthorization Act of 2018 (S. 3029), to reauthorize through Fiscal Year 2023 the Prematurity Research Expansion and Education for Mothers who deliver Infants Early Act. This will ensure mothers of preterm children are provided with the care and resources they require.
I passed into law the Using Evidence to Move Welfare Recipients into Work Act (S. 961) that establishes a “What Works Clearinghouse” at the Department of Health and Human Services to catalogue the different approaches to helping welfare recipients move into work.
|Bill #||Bill Description||Updated|
|S.2733||Cosponsored — TRUST Act|
A bill to repeal changes made by health care reform laws to the Medicare exception to the prohibition on certain physician referrals for hospitals, and for other purposes.
|S.2160||Cosponsored — CO ALERTS Act of 2019|
A bill to improve the removal of lead from drinking water in public housing.
A bill to amend title XI of the Social Security Act with respect to organ procurement organizations.
To amend XVIII of the Social Security Act to require certain manufacturers to report drug pricing information with respect to drugs under the Medicare program.
|S.1903||Cosponsored — A bill to establish an interagency One Health Program, and for other purposes.|
|S.1725||Cosponsored — A bill to permit occupational therapists to conduct the initial assessment visit and complete the comprehensive assessment under a Medicare home health plan of care for certain rehabilitation cases.|
|S.1531||Cosponsored — A bill to amend the Public Health Service Act to provide protections for health insurance consumers from surprise billing.|
|S.1280||Cosponsored — A bill to amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to establish a system to notify individuals approaching Medicare eligibility, to simplify and modernize the eligibility enrollment process, and for other purposes.|