Trump Picks HHS Secretary
announced his decision to nominate Alex Azar to serve as his next Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). Most recently, Azar served as a
pharmaceutical executive with Eli Lilly and Company. During the George W. Bush administration,
Azar served as General Counsel and then as Deputy Secretary of HHS. His secretary
nomination is subject to confirmation by the Senate.
CHIP and Extenders Legislation Passes the House
The House of Representatives passed the Championing
Healthy Kids Act (H.R.
3922) on Nov.3, on a largely party-line vote of 242-174. This bill would
extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for five
years and extend funding for other health programs, including community
health centers, the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act,
family to family information centers, and National Health Service Corps for two
years. Unfortunately, one of the biggest offsets this bill uses to pay for
funding these programs is a $6.35 billion cut to the Prevention and Public
Health Fund (PPHF) over 10 years.
AMCHP is on record opposing the use of the PPHF as an offset.
Please see this letter that AMCHP sent to House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.)
and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in advance of the vote on the
Championing Healthy Kids Act to express its opposition. The Senate has
so far pursued a bipartisan process to renew funding for CHIP and the other
health care extenders. Negotiations in the Senate are ongoing, and it is
unclear what offsets the Senate will decide to use.
Update on MIECHV
In addition to a bipartisan, standalone five-year MIECHV
reauthorization bill introduced in the Senate (see
this letter of support signed by AMCHP, ASTHO, and Safe States Alliance),
there is now a draft bill circulating in the Senate to reauthorize several
health programs, including MIECHV, for two years. AMCHP joins the Home Visiting
Coalition in thanking senators for their inclusion of MIECHV reauthorization as
part of any moving legislative package but is reiterating support for a
five-year reauthorization in order to ensure the program can maximize the
number of families who can be served. Please continue reaching out to your
senators to ask them to advance S.1829, the five-year version of MIECHV