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Carter introduces bipartisan Essential Medicines Strategic Stockpile Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Reps. Earl L. "Buddy" Carter (R-GA) and Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE) introduced the Essential Medicines Strategic Stockpile Act to combat drug shortages and reduce the nation’s dependence on China for pharmaceuticals. 

The bill, also introduced by the pair in the 117th Congress, would require the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a list of 50 generic medications that are essential in public health emergencies, the same way the U.S. has a reserve of oil for energy-related emergencies.

“COVID-19 made it abundantly clear that the United States cannot rely on China for the safety and security of our drug supply chain,”
said Rep. Carter. “When a parent goes to the store and sees an empty shelf where amoxicillin should be, the emergency stockpile of essential medicines is no longer an idea, it’s a life-saving measure. This step will strengthen our nation’s health, security, and emergency response readiness. I’m grateful to Congresswoman Blunt Rochester for spearheading this legislation with me.”

“As we saw throughout the pandemic, one of our greatest public health challenges is ensuring that patients have reliable access to essential generic medicines,"
said Blunt Rochester. "I’m proud to join Congressman Carter in introducing critical legislation that will ensure Americans have sustained access to life-saving, critical medications during national emergencies.”

Read the full text of the bill