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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Duane Quam (R)

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News from Rep Quam (1-18-18)

Thursday, January 18, 2018


I hope the new year finds you well and you enjoyed the Vikings game. (I liked the first half, got a cardio workout from the last few minutes, and much joy from a special moment that actually went our way). It's been a busy start to the year preparing for the 2018 session that kicks off on February 20th. Below is an update on one of the important bills I’m working hard on this year. Have a great weekend! 

Also, Skol Vikings! 

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Rep. Quam met with and helped the students of Kasson Mantorville's Government Class with their mock session. 

Pharmacogenomics and a Genetic Marker Pilot

For the first time, Americans are spending more money on prescription drugs than on in hospital or doctor care. We must find ways to decrease the money being spent on prescription drugs if we are to seriously address the high costs of health care in the US. One remedy for this is to make sure doctors prescribe the correct medicine and correct dosage the first time. Every patient is a unique individual, and currently, it can take multiple variations of drugs and dosages in order to get the right one for a given individual.

After speaking with experts on how best to update and improve my bill, HF 402, which will create a pharmacogenomics and a genetic marker pilot program. This will create a voluntary pilot program that will report on cost savings and health outcomes the program delivers. The purpose of this program is to refine the understanding of disease onset and progression, treatment response, and health outcomes through more precise measurement of genetic factors that contribute to health and disease. The eventual goal is to provide better, more efficient health care at lower costs due to the ability to get things right the first time. 

This week I met with reps from the University of Minnesota, leaders in individualized medicine from the Mayo Clinic, OneOme an international provider of biomarkers that was founded in Minnesota, and members of Governor Dayton's Administration to discuss how to prescribe the right medicine and the correct dosage on the first attempt. These discussions will help lead us to a solution that provides better care for our families, friends, and neighbors while containing the cost of prescription drugs.

Electrical Grid Modernization 

This week I will be attending a discussion about updating and modernizing our electrical grid being put on by OATI, a leader in the microgrid industry. With so much of our lives being dependent on always having electricity available, our electrical grid has become a top target for terrorism or saboteurs. Staying one step ahead of these bad actors with a state of the art electrical grid is of the utmost importance for Minnesota in the 21st Century. 

Rochester Meetings

  • I met with Rochester officials on the latest with MNLARS, the new title system that has caused many headaches across the state. I can report that progress has been made and officials are cautiously optimistic that the problems are mostly behind them. Minnesotans should have an easier time when visiting the DMV for new titles or changing registration than they encountered in 2017. 
  • I also met with multiple utility groups and energy co-ops that serve our area to discuss energy issues and their perspectives on what 2018 and beyond will bring to the energy industry. 

Please continue to stay in touch to share your thoughts and ideas on issues important to you. You can schedule a time to meet with me in my office anytime by calling (651) 296-9236, or share your thoughts via email by emailing me at

Thank you and have a great week,