CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
On Thursday, November 13, 2014, the House will consider S. 2539, the Traumatic Brain Injury Reauthorization Act of 2014. S. 2539 was introduced on June 26, 2014 by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and passed in the Senate by unanimous consent.
S. 2539 amends the Public Health Service Act to reauthorize the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) prevention and surveillance programs through 2019. Moreover, this legislation reauthorizes grant programs to states and Indian tribes for TBI services and protection and advocacy systems to aid individuals with TBI. S. 2539 also directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to develop a plan to improve coordination of federal activities related to TBI. This plan would be required to: 1) review existing interagency coordination efforts with respect to Federal TBI activities; 2) identify areas for improved coordination between Federal agencies and programs; 3) identify adopted recommendations from the report on development and improvement of TBI diagnostic tools and treatments; 4) describe plans to address each recommendation from the report that has not been adopted; and 5) incorporate feedback from stakeholders. The Secretary of HHS would then be required to submit the plan to the relevant Congressional Committees. Finally, the bill directs the CDC to review the scientific evidence related to brain injury management in children and identify research opportunities.
Approximately 1.4 million Americans currently experience TBI, and another 3.2 million Americans live with long-term disabilities as a result of brain injury. Of these, 360,000 have been inflicted as a result of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. The total economic burden of TBI is estimated to be $60 billion annually. This legislation reauthorizes CDC and HRSA activities and programs related to TBI, and extends grants for services and support to individuals afflicted with TBI.
The House companion bill, H.R. 1098, passed on June 24, 2014 by voice vote.
CBO estimates that implementing this legislation would cost approximately $61 million over the 2015-2019 period, assuming the appropriation of the authorized amounts.
For questions or further information contact the GOP Conference at 5-5107.