WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), led a bipartisan group of her colleagues in a letter to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) urging the agency to study the long-term effects of COVID-19 and potential treatments for those suffering from long-haul COVID-19. The letter was also signed by Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Bob Casey (D-PA), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Susan Collins (R-ME), and Chris Murphy (D-CT).
“As we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, it is clear there will be a lasting impact on patients around the world. While many individuals who contract COVID-19 are able to recover, there is a growing number who suffer long-term symptoms. In addition to studying these long-hauler patients with continuous symptoms, we must learn more about other potential long-term impacts of COVID-19,” wrote the Senators. “Studies have shown coronavirus links to heart disease, lung damage, and diabetes to name a few. The long-term impact for individuals of all ages following COVID-19 is also unknown. We therefore ask that you update Congress on FDA-NIH collaboration to study the impacts of the virus and your agency’s participation in the COVID-19 Diagnostics Evidence Accelerator.”
“We request that you provide Congress an update on how FDA and NIH are collaborating to ensure adequate data is available for regulatory decision-making purposes, including identification of existing gaps and any future plans to fill in those gaps,” the Senators continued. “We also request an update on the collaboration announced last year regarding FDA’s participation in the COVID-19 Diagnostics Evidence Accelerator, organized by the Reagan-Udall Foundation for the FDA and Friends of Cancer Research, including how FDA is utilizing appropriated funds in recent months to support this work.”
BACKGROUND: Earlier this year, Senator Rosen re-introduced her Ensuring Understanding of COVID-19 to Protect Public Health Act, bipartisan legislation that would direct the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to conduct a longitudinal study on mild, moderate, and severe cases of COVID-19 to ensure the U.S. gains a full understanding of both the short and long-term health impacts of the novel coronavirus.