WASHINGTON — Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, issued the following statement Wednesday after President Trump signed into law S.204, the Trickett Wendler, Frank Mongiello, Jordan McLinn, and Matthew Bellina Right to Try Act of 2017. Last week, the House passed Johnson’s bill, which is aimed at allowing terminally ill patients, their doctors, and pharmaceutical manufacturers to administer investigational medical treatments to patients with life-threatening diseases. The Senate passed S.204 in August of 2017:
“Today’s right to try bill signing was a moment of deserved celebration for everyone who fought to return a little freedom and restore hope to terminally ill patients and their families. I applaud and thank them all. However, bureaucracies rarely cede their authority over our lives without a fight. So, we must — and we will — remain vigilant that these hard-won freedoms are implemented and preserved as intended.”
S.204, the Trickett Wendler, Frank Mongiello, Jordan McLinn, and Matthew Bellina Right to Try Act of 2017 can be found here.
Johnson’s statement regarding the intent of right to try and implementation by the FDA can be found here.
Forty states already have passed right to try bills on an overwhelmingly bipartisan basis.
Details on Johnson’s right to try work can be found below:
Feb. 18, 2016: Johnson’s letter to the FDA can be found here.
Feb. 25, 2016: Johnson held a hearing on connecting patients to new and potential life saving treatments.
Feb. 25, 2016: Johnson expressed his support for right to try.
March 16, 2016: Letter from Sens. Johnson, Carper, Donnelly and Coats to the FDA on can be found here.
April 26, 2016: Johnson’s statement on an FDA panel not approving eteplirsen can be found here.
May 10, 2016: Johnson introduced the Trickett Wendler Right to Try Act.
May 23, 2016: Johnson’s and Sen. Coats’ letter to the FDA can be found here.
June 16, 2016: Johnson advocates for right to try legislation at a Capitol Hill rally.
Sept. 16, 2016: Johnson’s and Sen. Alexander’s letter to the FDA can be found here.
Sept. 19, 2016: Johnson letter to FDA Commissioner Califf expressing disappointment at his refusal to testify at a right to try hearing.
Sept. 19, 2016: Johnson applauds an FDA decision to approve eteplirsen to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
Sept. 22, 2016: Johnson held a hearing on right to try.
Sept. 22, 2016: Johnson calls on fellow senators to pass bill to give terminally ill patients hope.
Sept. 26, 2016: Johnson calls on Senate to support right to try legislation.
Sept. 28, 2016: Johnson criticizes partisan blocking of bill for terminally ill patients.
Sept. 29, 2016: Johnson corrects the record in letter to Minority Leader Reid after right to try bill is blocked.
Oct. 24, 2016: After FDA’s silence, Johnson presses HHS for answers on right to try laws.
Nov. 16, 2016: 44th senator co-sponsors legislation giving terminally ill patients hope.
Jan. 24, 2017: Johnson re-introduces Trickett Wendler Right to Try Act with 39 original co-sponsors.
Aug. 3, 2017: Johnson Right to Try Bill Passes Senate
Oct. 2, 2017: Johnson and Donnely write letter to House Energy and Commerce Committee.
Feb. 2, 2018: President Trump encourages Congress to pass right to try.
March 21, 2018: Johnson statement on House passage of House version of right to try.
March 23, 2018: Johnson calls on House to pass S. 204 after House right to try bill fails in the Senate.
May 21, 2018: Johnson, Donnelly Statement on Expected House Vote on Senate-Approved Right to Try Bill
May 22, 2018: House passes Johnson’s right to try bill.