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Statement from Georges Benjamin, MD, executive director, American Public Health Association
Washington, D.C., June 26, 2017 — “Independent analysis by the Congressional Budget Office released today shows the Senate health care bill would seriously jeopardize the health of America.
"The CBO score reveals that 15 million Americans next year and 22 million by 2026 would lose health insurance under the Senate plan. This substantial increase in the uninsured means 49 million Americans will be uninsured by 2026 with the burden falling most heavily on lower-income, older Americans. The CBO analysis underscores the American Public Health Association’s deep concerns about this measure: it will add millions more people to the rolls of the uninsured, jeopardize our chance to build a healthier America and pose a threat to every American community.
"The Senate bill would eliminate critical public health funding beginning in 2018 by repealing the Prevention and Public Health Fund, which funds activities that help prevent disease in communities across the country and accounts for 12 percent of the budget for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Quite simply, it puts the nation’s health security at risk.
"The measure would also devastate the Medicaid program by cutting Medicaid funding by $772 billion over 10 years and phasing out expansion of the program instituted under the Affordable Care Act, a destructive blow to the most vulnerable Americans. It also would allow states to opt out of requiring that health plans cover essential health benefits and block Medicaid reimbursements to Planned Parenthood.
"We urge senators to oppose this bill and instead work for transparent, bipartisan solutions to improve and build upon existing law."
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APHA champions the health of all people and all communities. We strengthen the public health profession. We speak out for public health issues and policies backed by science. We are the only organization that combines a 145-year perspective, a broad-based member community and the ability to influence federal policy to improve the public’s health. Visit us at www.apha.org.