The week in health policy

Meanwhile, the Obama administration will make major news on Tuesday with the scheduled unveiling of its long-awaited AIDS strategy.

Also Tuesday, the House Veterans Affairs Committee holds a field hearing in St. Louis on “the consequences of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center Non-Compliance.”

A couple of hearings this week may also boost two bills’ chances of becoming law this year.

On Tuesday, the House Education and Labor Committee holds a hearing on mine-worker safety legislation. Sponsored by panel chairman George Miller (D-Calif.), the bill would make it easier for the nation’s miners to complain about unsafe conditions; grant mine safety regulators subpoena power when conducting investigations; hike penalties for safety violations; and empower federal regulators to close unsafe mines more easily.

The next day, the Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee holds a hearing on the use of antibiotics in animal agriculture. House Rules Committee Chairwoman Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) has a bill to restrict the practice. It got a boost last week when the Food and Drug Administration released draft guidance suggesting that excessive use of antibiotics to grow bigger poultry and livestock “poses a serious public health threat.”