New representatives take leadership of Congressional Integrative Health and Wellness Caucus

Bi-partisan partners, Representative Judy Chu (D-CA) and Jackie Walorski (R-IN) have taken leadership of the Congressional Integrative Health and Wellness Caucus, according to the Integrative Health Policy Consortium (IHPC), who announced the news in a press release late last week.

The new Caucus co-chairs both sit on the Committee on Ways and Means, the chief tax-writing committee in the House of Representatives that is responsible for revenue-related aspects of Medicare, such as payments to healthcare providers to Medicare beneficiaries. Rep. Chu and Rep. Walorski were also key players in the passing of H.R.6, the Opioid Crisis Response Act, and are involved in seeking legislative solutions regarding patient access to nonpharmacologic treatments and services for pain and addiction, according to the IHPC.

The Caucus was launched on October 25, 2017 by former Representatives Mike Coffman (R-CO) and Jared Polis (D-CO), serving as a non-partisan educational forum for legislators to receive up-to-date information from experts related to best practices and new research, and to discuss legislative and administrative opportunities for integrative health.

Under new leadership, the Caucus will hold its first meeting on Wednesday March 6 on Capitol Hill with an educational program and active demonstration of integrative treatments provided to House Members and staff. The event is open to all members of Congress and their staff.

With the recent passage of the Opioid Crisis Response Act last October, the focus of the event, according to the IHPC, will be integrative models of care for pain management. Hosted by the IHPC, speakers will educate lawmakers on integrative health models of care and current barriers to access for these care models. Demonstrations will include nonpharmacologic services designed to treat chronic neck and back pain.