"Untenable": PHI Statement on House Health Care Proposal
March 07, 2017
STATEMENT FROM MATTHEW MARSOM, PHI VICE PRESIDENT FOR PUBLIC POLICY AND PROGRAMS
"PHI is strongly opposed to the health care ‘replacement’ plan put forward by the House this week. Quite simply, it puts the health and security of the United States at risk. Access to affordable healthcare, prevention, and solid public health infrastructure are critical components of the stability and health of our country. This proposal puts them in jeopardy.
"This proposal would eliminate the Prevention and Public Health Fund, gutting the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's annual budget and zeroing out billions of dollars of investments in all states, including life-saving vaccinations, programs that reduce chronic disease rates, and initiatives that address and prevent infectious diseases and other outbreaks. This would make our country sicker and our healthcare more expensive. It also leaves us unable to address the health and global security threats of emerging infectious diseases like Zika, Ebola, Avian Flu and others that require a strong public health workforce and funding for surveillance and response. We can't afford to dial back the progress that has already been made under the Prevention Fund, resulting in healthier communities and families across the country.
"Rolling back Medicaid expansion and radically restructuring the financing of the program, penalizing people for gaps in health coverage, and providing tax credits sorely below what is necessary to pay for quality care will result in less coverage, less stability in the insurance market, and ultimately higher health care costs and a sicker society.
"This slapdash proposal has been released without a congressional budget office score detailing the cost of the plan or the impacts on coverage. Still, it is certain that less coverage and less prevention will cost us millions down the road. Worse, the impacts of this plan will be borne by those who can afford it the least.
"In this current political environment it can be rare to see bipartisan agreement, but we join today with Republicans, Democrats, policy and health care analysts, health care and public health organizations and the American people to say that this proposed legislation is untenable and must be opposed."