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Foster Unique Patient ID Amendment Adopted by House

Jul 30, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC - Today, the House unanimously adopted an amendment offered by Congressman Bill Foster (D-IL) as part of the appropriations bill for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and Education.

The amendment eliminates a long-standing appropriations rider in the bill that prevents HHS from adopting standards related to unique health identifiers for patients. Unique patient identifiers could aid in slowing the spread of COVID-19, and prevent “doctor shopping” for opioid prescriptions, lower costs, reduce medical errors, and save lives. 

“I am proud that my bipartisan amendment was adopted by the House,” Foster said. “Removing this archaic ban is more important than ever as we face the COVID-19 pandemic. Our ability to accurately identify patients across the care continuum is critical to addressing this public health emergency, and removing this ban will alleviate difficult and avoidable operational issues, which will save money and, most importantly, save lives.”