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Following Oversight Hearing, Rep. Porter Continues Fight for Affordable, Accessible Coronavirus Tests

Congresswoman demands that Administration officials keep commitments to patients

WASHINGTON—Today, Congresswoman Katie Porter (CA-45) called on the nation's top public health agency to keep its commitment the American people by making diagnostic testing for the coronavirus free for all. She was joined in her effort by Congresswomen Ayanna Pressley (MA-07), Rosa DeLauro (CT-03), and Lauren Underwood (IL-14).

Yesterday, in a fiery exchange in the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Porter asked Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Robert Redfield to use his existing authority to cover the costs of diagnostic testing for Americans. Rep. Porter had made this request with her colleagues, Reps. DeLauro and Underwood, a week ago, but the CDC had failed to respond. Dr. Redfield agreed to cover these costs, but walked his statement back at the end of the hearing.

“I’ve seen this time and time again with CEOs and Administration officials—they think they can say one thing to the American people in public, but when no one’s looking, they break their promises,” Congresswoman Porter said. “I plan to hold the our public accountable and ensure he follows through on his commitment to our country. It is his responsibility to make testing available for patients, and this is a critical, life-saving measure.”

Congresswoman Porter also sent a letter yesterday to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requesting that they expedite a process to give academic medical centers, like the University of California, the ability to run diagnostic tests for coronavirus.

Porter’s full letter to the CDC can be found here.