The Cures Act, or the 21st Century Cures Act, is a significant U.S. law enacted in 2016. Its overarching goal is to accelerate medical research and innovation, streamline the approval process for drugs and medical devices, and improve the healthcare system. Some key provisions of the Cures Act include:
Funding for Medical Research: The law provides funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support biomedical research, including the Precision Medicine Initiative and the Cancer Moonshot (see ARPA-H).
Drug Development and Approval: The Cures Act includes provisions to streamline and expedite the drug development and approval process, with the goal of bringing safe and effective treatments to patients more quickly.
Mental Health Reform: It includes provisions to improve mental health services and address mental health issues, such as funding for mental health research and programs.
Interoperability and Health IT: The legislation promotes the interoperability of electronic health records (EHRs) and aims to improve the exchange of health information. It also addresses issues related to information blocking and encourages the use of health IT standards.
Patient Access to Health Information: The Cures Act includes provisions to empower patients by giving them easier access to their health information through the use of health information technology.
FDA Regulatory Processes: The law seeks to modernize and improve the regulatory processes of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), aiming to facilitate the development of innovative medical products.
By addressing these areas, the Cures Act aims to enhance the development and accessibility of medical treatments and improve overall healthcare outcomes.