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Rep. Paulsen and Mike Allen discuss innovation's role in health care costs. Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios

Axios health care reporter Bob Herman and executive editor Mike Allen hosted a conversation on the cost of innovation in the health care ecosystem and how biosimilars, technology and policy will affect it.

Bob and Mike sat down with:

  • The Honorable Sander Levin, U.S. Representative (D-MI-09)
    Ranking Member, House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health
  • The Honorable Erik Paulsen, U.S. Representative (R-MN-03)
    Member, House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health
  • Dr. Kristian R. Olson, Director, Consortium for Affordable Medical Technologies, Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Ms. Sabrina Corlette, Research Professor, Georgetown University Health Policy Institute
Bob Herman kicks off the event. Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios
Bob Herman and Dr. Kris Olson. Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios

Dr. Olson, who's known as the 'The Man' of life-saving devices, tells Bob how CAMTech is making health care more accessible and affordable around the world.

Bob Herman and Ms. Sabrina Corlette. Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios.

Ms. Corlette on politics' role in health care costs: "American politics seems to value health care innovation—but not value itself. But actual people do."

Her take on the distribution of rising health care costs: “We’ve got this balloon and it’s being pushed around rather than shrunk.”

Rep. Erik Paulsen and Mike allen.
"Innovation is the primary path to lower health care costs."
— Rep. Erik Paulsen
Rep. Sandy Levin and Mike Allen. Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios

On the Affordable Care Act:

  • Rep. Levin: “There are various ways to get to universal coverage. We took a big step forward, and that has been sustained despite the efforts of the administration to undercut ACA."
  • Rep Paulsen: “The one-size-fits-all approach has not served us well.”

Thank you Pfizer for sponsoring this event.

Go deeper

27 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Vaccinations, relief timing dominate Sweet 16 call

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) speaks during a news conference in December with a group of bipartisan lawmakers. Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Vaccine distribution, pandemic data and a cross-party comity dominated today's virtual meeting between White House officials and a bipartisan group of 16 senators, Senator Angus King told Axios.

Why it matters: Given Democrats' razor-thin majority in both chambers of Congress, President Biden will have to rely heavily on this group of centrist lawmakers — dubbed the "Sweet 16" — to pass any substantial legislation.

Progressives pressure Schumer to end filibuster

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

A progressive coalition is pressuring Chuck Schumer on his home turf by running a digital billboard in Times Square urging the new majority leader to end the Senate filibuster.

Why it matters: Schumer is up for re-election in 2o22 and could face a challenger, and he's also spearheading his party's broader effort to hold onto its narrow congressional majorities.

5 hours ago - Health

U.S. surpasses 25 million COVID cases

A mass COVID-19 vaccination site at Dodger Stadium on Jan. 22 in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

The U.S has confirmed more than 25 million coronavirus cases, per Johns Hopkins data updated on Sunday.

The big picture: President Biden has said he expects the country's death toll to exceed 500,000 people by next month, as the rate of deaths due to the virus continues to escalate.