Budget Would Thwart Progress
A few medical groups on Monday quickly criticized Trump’s proposals.
“In a time where our nation continues to face significant public health challenges including 2019 novel coronavirus, climate change, gun violence and costly chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer the administration should be investing more resources in better health, not cutting federal health budgets,” said Georges C. Benjamin, MD, executive director of the American Public Health Association, in a statement.
David J. Skorton, MD, chief executive and president of the Association of American Medical Colleges also urged increased investment in fighting disease.
“We must continue the bipartisan budget trajectory set forth by Congress over the last several years, not reverse course,” Skorton said in a statement.
Trump’s proposed cuts in medical research “would thwart scientific progress on strategies to prevent, diagnose, treat, and cure medical conditions that affect countless patients nationwide,” he said.
In total, the new 2021 appropriations for HHS would fall by $9.46 billion to $85.667 billion under Trump’s proposal. Appropriations, also called discretionary budget authority, represents the operating budgets for federal agencies. These are decided through annual spending bills.
Congress has separate sets of laws for handling payments the federal government makes through Medicare and Medicaid. These are known as mandatory spending.
Trump Cuts To Cdc Worry Health Experts In Ny
The 17 percent cut would leave the CDC with its smallest budget in more than 20 years. | AP Photo/Gerald Herbert
05/23/2017 05:36 PM EDT
On the Friday before Donald Trump was elected president, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sent out an alert notifying hospitals and the public that 13 cases of Candida auris, a drug resistant fungus, had been detected in the United States.
Three of those cases had been found in New York and two of those patients had died.
The CDC knew of the new cases because five months earlier, in June , 2016, the agency asked hospitals and labs to be on the lookout for the fungus, which was discovered in 2009 in Japan.
The state Department of Health sent out an advisory to hospitals, nursing homes, regional health offices and local health departments telling them to watch out for the fungus and how to respond.
There have been 53 cases and 20 deaths in New York as of the first week of May, although all of those patients had underlying conditions so it isnt clear that the fungus is the culprit. What is clear is that the state, guided by the CDC, has taken action to prevent the fungus from spreading.
The 17 percent cut would leave the CDC with its smallest budget in more than 20 years.
In its place, the Trump administration proposes a $500 million health block grant for states to respond to public health threats.
A federal agency is needed to coordinate responses to national and global problems.
Did Donald Trump Fire Pandemic Officials Defund Cdc
If Your Time is short
- Fired may be a little strong, but in 2018, top national security officials handling pandemics left abruptly and were not replaced by the Trump administration.
- As for funding, theres no question that the Trump administration sought to cut key CDC budget categories. But thanks to Congress, that funding was restored and even increased in bills that Trump ultimately signed.
During a CNN town hall before the South Carolina primary, Mike Bloomberg a former New York City mayor and Democratic presidential candidate was asked whether he had confidence in President Donald Trump to handle a potential coronavirus pandemic, officially known as the COVID-19 virus.
After jokingly saying, “I feel so much better,” Bloomberg told the audience, “No. 1, he fired the pandemic team two years ago. No. 2, he’s been defunding the Centers for Disease Control. So, we don’t have the experts in place that we need. I hope he’s right that the virus doesn’t come here, that nobody gets sick. That would be a wonderful outcome. But the bottom line is, we are not ready for this kind of thing.”
Bloomberg had a point that the Trump administration ousted some of its officials dealing with global pandemics, but “defunding” the CDC is more complicated than he let on.
Instead, Trump has looked within his administration to fill roles for the coronavirus response.
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Massive Cuts To Science And Medicine In Trump Budget
The budget proposed by United States President Donald Trump calls for massive cuts to spending on medical and scientific research, public health and disease-prevention programs, and health insurance for low-income Americans and their children. It has drawn intense criticism from many corners, including scientists, physicians and politicians from both the Democratic and Republican parties. The only good thing about this horror of a budget, according to one pundit, is that it will likely get eviscerated in Congress.
Under the proposed budget, formally delivered to Congress yesterday, the National Institutes of Health would see its annual budget shrink 18% from $31.8 billion to $26 billion. This includes cuts to the National Cancer Institute , National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute , and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases .
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would lose 17% of its budget, a cut of $1.2 billion. This news prompted former CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden to and rebuke this assault on science that will devastate programs that protect Americans from many deadly conditions, including diabetes, heart attacks and strokes. He noted that the cuts would give the CDC its lowest budget in 20 years and lead to an increase in illness and deaths.
Deep cuts to science and medicine in Trump budget draw intense criticism.
Trump Proposes 16% Cut To Cdc As Global Number Of Coronavirus Infections And Deaths Rise
An additional 34% reduction is proposed for overall global health programs, but Trump is asking for … $115 million to be set aside for global health security.
Topline: As the coronavirus continues to spread, President Trumps proposed 2021 budget calls for drastic cuts to funding for the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization that critics say could prevent preparedness for a pandemic at home.
Chief critics: The Senate Budget Committee as the ranking member) said Trumps budget would destroy discretionary programs cutting them by $1.9 trillion. These are things like Section 8, Head Start, WIC, LIHEAP, public housing, NOAA, NIH, NASA, NSF, the CDCmost of the programs that we think of when we think of what the government does. And James Hamblin, a doctor who writes for The Atlantic, that the budget doesnt consider pandemic preparedness a matter of national security.
What to watch for: How Trump and his administration continue to respond to coronavirus. During a Monday speech in New Hampshire, Trump said, By April . . . when it gets a little warmer, miraculously goes away, a theory debunked by infectious disease experts. The president is a known germaphobe, and experts are concerned that Trumps phobia, combined with his suspicions of foreigners and previous dismissals of the validity of science, could be dangerous.
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Trumps Who Cutoff Sends Officials Allies Scrambling
One of the presidents top public health officials also distanced himself from the move.
Alex Brandon/AP Photo
04/15/2020 02:24 PM EDT
President Donald Trumps 60-day freeze on U.S. funding of the World Health Organization was met with swift criticism Wednesday, with defenders of the United Nations agency denouncing the directive as a risky and baffling maneuver amid the very kind of global pandemic it was meant to combat.
Bill Gates, the Microsoft founder and philanthropist who has pledged billions to help speed development of a coronavirus vaccine, tweeted that halting funding for the World Health Organization during a world health crisis is as dangerous as it sounds.
Inside the State Department, officials scrambled to make sense of the White Houses decision. James L. Richardson, the director of U.S. foreign assistance resources, informed his staff in a brief email that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had instructed diplomats and aid officials to identify and utilize alternative implementers for foreign assistance beyond the WHO.
By taking this approach, Richardson wrote, we can continue our good work on behalf of the American people, while ensuring that U.S. foreign assistance is best positioned to improve the lives of vulnerable people around the world, as Americans have always done.
CORONAVIRUS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
President Donald Trump and Melania Trump have tested positive for Covid-19.
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Exclusive: Us Slashed Cdc Staff Inside China Prior To Coronavirus Outbreak
11 Min Read
WASHINGTON – The Trump administration cut staff by more than two-thirds at a key U.S. public health agency operating inside China, as part of a larger rollback of U.S.-funded health and science experts on the ground there leading up to the coronavirus outbreak, Reuters has learned.
Most of the reductions were made at the Beijing office of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and occurred over the past two years, according to public CDC documents viewed by Reuters and interviews with four people familiar with the drawdown.
The Atlanta-based CDC, Americas preeminent disease fighting agency, provides public health assistance to nations around the world and works with them to help stop outbreaks of contagious diseases from spreading globally. It has worked in China for 30 years.
The CDCs China headcount has shrunk to around 14 staffers, down from approximately 47 people since President Donald Trump took office in January 2017, the documents show. The four people, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the losses included epidemiologists and other health professionals.
The material reviewed by Reuters shows a breakdown of how many American and local Chinese employees were assigned there. The documents are the CDCs own descriptions of its headcount, which it posts online. Reuters was able to search past copies of the material to confirm the decline described by the four people.
Chinas embassy in Washington, D.C. declined to comment.
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More: Who Raises Global Coronavirus Risk From ‘high’ To ‘very High’
Asked about the criticism at a House budget hearing Wednesday, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said that, during the presidents tenure, every part of our preparedness and infectious disease program activity has been enhanced and expanded.
Azar went on the say the presidents budget proposals are just the jumping-off point for budget negotiations.
Trump’s Staff Cuts Have Undermined Covid
White House cut staff tasked with identifying global health problems in China, and tried to slash CDC funding
The Trump administration badly undermined the effort to contain the coronavirus outbreak by getting rid of most staff tasked with identifying global health problems in China while repeatedly attempting to slash funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , according to a new report by an environmental watchdog.
Over the past three years, the Trump administration has drastically reduced a team working in China to identify global health threats like Covid-19, which originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan late last year. The initiatives 11 CDC staffers have been cut to three people, while 39 workers classed as local employees have been reduced to 11 people.
The administration disbanded the national security councils directorate charged with global health and has sought to go further still, requesting budget cuts from the CDC of up to 20% for each of the past three years, only to be rebuffed by Congress. Trumps effort to dismantle the Affordable Care Act would also have reduced the CDCs funding by around 8% a year.
The CDC has still undergone an erosion of budget and staff under Trump but without Congresss defiance thousands more Americans would likely die over the next few months because of even more reduced capacity at the CDC, according to the report, compiled by the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative .
More: Coronavirus Could Lead To Drug Shortages In Us
The president fired the pandemic specialist in this country two years ago, Bloomberg said. So, there’s nobody here to figure out what the hell we should be doing.
In 2018, Trump administration eliminated the position of senior director for global health security and biodefense as part of a broader downsizing of the NSC spearheaded by then-National Security Adviser John Bolton. Earlier this month, 27 Democratic senators sent a letter to current National Security Adviser Robert OBrien urging him to reinstate the position and asking him to clarify how the White House plans to handle global health security threats.
Families concerned about the novel coronavirus threat need to know the NSC has a dedicated, senior official with appropriate expertise and authority to address the domestic and global health threats from the virus, they wrote. It is of paramount importance that this person approaches this role though a public health lens.
Trump Disbanded Nsc Pandemic Unit That Experts Had Praised
WASHINGTON Public health and national security experts shake their heads when President Donald Trump says the coronavirus came out of nowhere and blindsided the world.
Theyve been warning about the next pandemic for years and criticized the Trump administrations decision in 2018 to dismantle a National Security Council directorate at the White House charged with preparing for when, not if, another pandemic would hit the nation.
It would be nice if the office was still there, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institute of Health, told Congress this week. I wouldnt necessarily characterize it as a mistake . I would say we worked very well with that office.
The NSC directorate for global health and security and bio-defense survived the transition from President Barack Obama to Trump in 2017.
Trumps elimination of the office suggested, along with his proposed budget cuts for the CDC, that he did not see the threat of pandemics in the same way that many experts in the field did.
One year later I was mystified when the White House dissolved the office, leaving the country less prepared for pandemics like COVID-19, Beth Cameron, the first director of the unit, wrote in an op-ed Friday in The Washington Post.
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Trump Seeks To Cut Nih Cdc Budgets Some Medicare Spending
Kerry Dooley Young
The Trump administration on Monday argued for cutting spending for a federal agency at the forefront of the efforts to combat the coronavirus, while also seeking to slow spending in certain parts of the Medicare and Medicaid programs.
President Donald Trump presented his fiscal 2021 request to Congress for refilling the coffers of federal agencies. In any administration, an annual budget serves only as a political blueprint, as the White House document itself makes no changes in federal spending.
In Trump’s case, several of his requests for agencies within the Department of Health & Human Services run counter to recent budget trends. Republicans and Democrats in Congress have worked together in recent years to increase budgets for major federal health agencies.
But Trump asked Congress to cut annual budget authority for the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases by $430 million to $5.446 billion for fiscal 2021.
In contrast, Congress has raised the annual budget for NIAID, a key agency in combating the coronavirus, from $5.545 billion in fiscal 2019 to $5.876 billion in fiscal 2020, which began in October, according to an HHS summary of Trump’s request.
For the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , which is central to the battle against the coronavirus, Trump proposed a drop in discretionary funding to $5.627 billion. In contrast, Congress raised this CDC budget from $6.544 billion in fiscal 2019 to $6.917 in fiscal 2020.
Trump Budget Proposal A Disinvestment In Us Health: Cuts To Cdc Hrsa
Despite increasing health threats, the White House is calling for slashing hundreds of millions of dollars from the countrys lead public health agencies.
In February, President Donald Trump released his federal budget proposal for fiscal year 2021, calling for a cut of more than $693 million at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as a $742 million cut to programs at the Health Resources and Services Administration. Overall, the presidents budget proposes a 9% funding cut at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a 26% cut at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, massive cuts in Medicare and Medicaid spending, and funding decreases for safety net programs such as food and housing assistance.
This budget, put simply, is a disinvestment in the health of Americans, said APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin, MD, in a news release. We have an incredibly dedicated public health workforce that is ready to act. But we need federal investments to make that happen. An adequate and rational investment in the health of Americans is missing from this budget.
While White House budget proposals are typically considered dead on arrival meaning the final budget that makes it out of congressional negotiations and is signed into law will likely look nothing like Trumps proposal health advocates warn that it still serves as a starting point for negotiations.
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Centers For Disease Control And Prevention
The CDC, which is in charge of public health and disease prevention, would see its budget cut by $1.2 billion. Dr. Tom Frieden, who was director of the agency until 2017, went off on the proposed cuts on Twitter on Monday, saying Americans would be “less safe,” and that the cuts “would increase illness, death, risks to Americans, and health care costs.”
Dr. Tom Frieden May 23, 2017
He then outlined the direct impact the cuts would have on CDC’s programs, including to emergency preparedness programs and immunizations.
Dr. Tom Frieden May 23, 2017