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.
Did Trump Try To Cut The Cdc’s Budget As Democrats Claim: Analysis
The allegations come amid the emergency over the COVID-19 coronavirus.
Bipartisan concern grows over federal response to coronavirus outbreak
President Donald Trump is taking heat from Democrats for proposing budget cuts to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention amid growing fears about a new coronavirus outbreak in the United States, but administration officials say CDC funding has steadily increased since Trump took office.
An ABC News analysis of the presidents budget proposals compared to the congressionally approved spending plans ultimately enacted show both claims are true.
The president introduced his fiscal year 2021 budget proposal on Feb. 10, just 11 days after the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency of international concerns. The spending plan included a 16 percent reduction in CDC funding from the 2020 spending levels.
In fact, all of Trumps budget proposals have called for cuts to CDC funding, but Congress has intervened each time by passing spending bills with year-over-year increases for the CDC that Trump then signed into law.
During the Democratic presidential debate in South Carolina Tuesday, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg accused the president of defunding the CDC, claiming the result is that we dont have the organization that we need.
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.
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Cutting Funds And Staff
Every year since taking office, Trump has asked for deep cuts into research on emerging diseases â including the CDCâs small center on emerging and âzoonoticâ infectious diseases that jump the species barrier from animals to humans. The new coronavirus is just the latest example of these threats.
The CDCâs program focuses on infectious diseases ranging from foodborne illnesses to anthrax and Ebola. It manages laboratory, epidemiologic, analytic and prevention programs, and collaborates with state and local health departments, other federal government agencies, industry and foreign ministries of health.
In 2018, Trump tried to cut $65 million from this budget â a 10% reduction. In 2019, he sought a 19% reduction. For 2020, he proposed to cut federal spending on emerging infectious and zoonotic diseases . This would mean spending $100 million less in 2020 to study how such diseases infect humans than the U.S. did just two years ago.
Congress reinstated most of this funding, with bipartisan support. But the overall level of appropriations for relevant CDC programs is still 10% below what the U.S. spent in 2016, adjusting for inflation.
Dr. James Wilson, who led the team that provided warning of the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic, describes the need for global infectious disease forecasting.
There is no wall high enough to keep virulent pathogens from crossing national borders, and when they emerge there is a potential for widespread illness and death.
A Clear And Present Danger
There is no wall high enough to keep virulent pathogens from crossing national borders, and when they emerge there is a potential for widespread illness and death. Containing the first major Ebola epidemic in 2014-2016, which killed 11,000 people in West Africa, required an enormous global effort. Only 11 patients were treated for Ebola in the U.S., but that was because President Obama took the threat seriously, appointing an âEbola czarâ to coordinate U.S. preparedness and assistance.
Now that the White House has evicted the NSCâs global health security experts, it is not clear who in the Trump administration will be responsible for coordinating U.S. efforts in the event of a global pandemic.
The new coronavirus that emerged in Wuhan, China, has already spread to 25 countries. The CDC has confirmed that person-to-person transmission has occurred in the U.S. It will take a large-scale effort to contain this outbreak, and battling the virus requires money.
Although the Gates Foundation and other charities give away billions of dollars to promote public health, such gifts are no substitute for the kind of specific, targeted scientific research into emerging diseases that the CDC and other federal agencies are uniquely designed to conduct. Fighting epidemics also requires planning to prepare and coordinate with hospitals, medical professionals, pharmacies, airlines, local government and the general public, which also requires funding.
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Trump Pushes To Cut Funding For Covid
The Trump administration has balked at providing billions of dollars to fund coronavirus testing and shore up federal health agencies as the virus surges across the country, complicating efforts to reach agreement on the next round of pandemic aid.
Senate Republicans had drafted a proposal that would allocate $25 billion in grants to states for conducting testing and contact tracing, as well as about $10 billion for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and about $15 billion for the National Institutes of Health, according to a person familiar with the tentative plans, who cautioned that the final dollar figures remained in flux. They had also proposed providing $5.5 billion to the State Department and $20 billion to the Pentagon to help counter the virus outbreak and potentially distribute a vaccine at home and abroad.
But in talks over the weekend, administration officials instead pushed to zero out the funding for testing and for the nations top health agencies, and to cut the Pentagon funding to $5 billion, according to another person familiar with the discussions. The people asked for anonymity to disclose private details of the talks, which were first reported by The Washington Post.
The suggestions from the administration infuriated several Republicans on Capitol Hill, who saw them as tone deaf, given that more than 3.7 million people in the United States have been infected with the coronavirus and many states are experiencing spikes in cases.
Funds For The Nih And Nsf Would Stay Flat While Some Agencies Including The Fda And Nasa Would See Increases
PIXABAY, 12019Yesterday , President Donald Trumps administration released its proposed budget for fiscal year 2019just days after Congress passed a deal to increase discretionary spending caps. The proposal calls for cuts to some science agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , while maintaining or boosting funding for others.
Under the proposed budget, funds for the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health would remain at roughly the same level as in 2017. Trumps plan also includes adding three new agencies within the NIH, Nature reports: Two existing agencies, the National Institute of Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research and the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, would be transferred over to the NIH from the Department of Health and Human Services and from the CDC, respectively and a new National Institute for Research…
We are. . . concerned that the presidents budget would fold the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality into the NIH, Research!America CEO Mary Woolley says in a statement. This is a strategic mistake that dilutes the agencys critical mission to address waste and inefficiencies in our health care system.
The CDC and the Department of Education would also see budget reductions, of 12 percent and 5 percent, respectively.
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Read President Trump’s Budget Blueprint
No additional details are included, but that could mean diverting those funds from the CDC’s core budget to provide block grants to individual states.
“We are encouraged to see that state health agency priorities, such as flexible funding to meet state and territorial public health needs and the public health Emergency Fund, are in the President’s Budget,” said Michael Fraser, executive director of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, in an email.
“Those are things we really do want to see,” Fraser continued. “However, the fact is that support for those priorities comes at what looks like a very significant cost to existing programs. The proposed reductions to HHS may have serious negative impacts on both federal and state responses to public health needs and that leaves many of us extremely concerned.”
The budget also calls for the creation of a new “Federal Emergency Response Fund” that would be designed to “rapidly respond to public health outbreaks,” such as Zika. This is an idea that has been gaining support recently, especially in the wake of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the emergence of Zika as a threat to pregnant women and their babies.
President Obama’s emergency funding request to respond to Zika got mired in politics in Congress. The budget doesn’t specify how big this new fund would be.
The proposed budget is silent on the National Science Foundation, which provides about $7 billion a year in grants to researchers in many fields.
See Cuts To Prevention And Public Health Fund Puts Cdc Programs At Risk
Other science agencies, such the Food and Drug Administration and NASA, would see a growth in funds. The budget would give the FDA $3.3 billion, approximately $460 million more than it received in 2017, and NASA $19.9 billion, or a 1.3 percent increase. The proposal also allocates funds to fighting the opioid crisis, The New York Times reports: The Drug Enforcement Agency would receive an extra $41 million for this purpose and another $43 million would go toward fighting the opioid epidemic in schools.
Whether the proposal will pass through Congress remains to be seen. According to The New York Times, The blueprint is largely a political statement and is unlikely to influence lawmakers, who control the federal pursestrings.
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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.
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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