As many of know, a few days ago President-elect Trump named Rep. Tom Price as his nominee to lead the Department of Health and Human Services.
Though several medical organizations quickly endorsed him, NPA led the opposition and was one of the first physician groups to openly oppose the nomination with our statement below:
“The National Physicians Alliance opposes the nomination of Dr. Tom Price to become the next Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). Dr. Price’s efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with a much less comprehensive plan would significantly jeopardize coverage for millions of our patients (20 million Americans in Exchanges) and greatly weaken current protections that prohibit insurers from denying coverage or charging exorbitant rates because of pre-existing conditions (estimated 129 million Americans with pre-existing conditions). Moreover, his support to privatize Medicare would end the healthcare guarantee for our nation’s 57 million seniors and drastically hurt our most elderly and vulnerable patients. His past policy proposals would also dismantle our health insurance safety net (Medicaid) for over 80 million low-income Americans, including children (State Children’s Health Insurance Program). Lastly, his staunch opposition to reproductive health rights makes it clear he does not trust women to make their own decisions about their health. We believe our next HHS Secretary should support the continued expansion of coverage, fight to improve, not dismantle, our current Medicare program and pursue efforts to achieve a more equitable, affordable and high quality health care system for all.
We are dismayed that other large physician organizations have endorsed Dr. Price without consideration of the harm his policies would inflict on our collective patients. We call on other physician organizations to put our patients’ interests first and foremost, and encourage everyone to join the National Physicians Alliance, a physicians’ organization committed to advancing the core values of the medical profession: service, integrity and advocacy.”
The response we got from physicians and health care advocates across the nation has been overwhelmingly supportive.
Here are some of the highlights:
And here are some press clippings:
NPA “broke with pack and criticized the pick..”
The American Medical Association, to the consternation of many of its members, is backing the right-wing congressman, while the National Physicians Alliance is not.
“No [health secretary] nominee in recent memory has been such a threat for basic health care for our patients,” Trivedi said.
Now just recently there have been three new revelations that make this fight even more important:
- It was reported yesterday that Dr. Price belongs to a truly radical medical organization called the Association of American Physicians and Surgeon (AAPS) that stands at direct odds, in myriad ways, with some of very foundational beliefs of evidence-based modern public-health research. Among other things, the organization has expressed doubts about the connection between HIV and AIDS1, and peddled discredited2 about vaccines and autism3.
- Part of Tom Price/Republican plan to repeal the ACA is a massive bailout for the health insurance industry4. So while they pull coverage away from millions of Americans and leave them in the dark, they will hand out billions of taxpayer dollars to insurance companies!
- Conflicts of interest questions have surfaced related to investments owned by Tom Price as his multi-million dollar portfolio includes investments in pharmaceutical, medical device, and health insurance companies, the heart of the industries he would be overseeing as secretary5.
It is obvious we have to fight hard to protect our patients. And that this fight is just beginning.
After you sign it, please forward it along to at least 5 of your colleagues today.
Next week we will deliver this to the Senate to make sure the voice of the physician who puts patients first is heard!
1 “Paul in group with offbeat views,” Courier-Journal, 9/25/2010
2 “Rand Paul Was Longtime Member Of Group That Promoted Autism-Vaccines Link,” Buzz Feed News, 2/2/2015
3 “The curious company Trump’s HHS Secretary keeps,” The MaddowBlog, 12/1/2016
4 “GOP in talks about helping insurers after ObamaCare repeal,” The Hill, 12/1/2016
5 “Investments by Trump’s HHS pick raise questions over conflict of interest,” STAT, 12/2/2016