The House Appropriations Committee in June 2018 released the text of its fiscal year (FY) 2019 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education funding bill. The proposed legislation contains $177.1 billion in discretionary spending, which is similar to current enacted levels. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) would receive $89.2 billion, a $1 billion increase and $2.4 billion more than requested in the President’s budget. The bill would prohibit any funds from going toward health care coverage that provides abortion and it prohibits the use of funds to implement the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The National Institutes of Health (NIH), would receive $38.3 billion, an increase of $1.3 billion over FY 2018 and $4.1 billion more than the White House’s request.
President Trump’s request to rescind $15 billion in unspent funds was rejected in the Senate in June. A procedural vote on H.R. 3 to discharge the bill from the Senate Appropriations Committee failed 48-50. A simple majority was needed to advance the measure. Republicans Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Richard Burr (R-N.C.) joined Democrats in voting against the legislation.
The Administration released a plan to reorganize major components of the federal government. If implemented, the proposal from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) would merge agencies with overlapping or duplicative responsibilities and eliminate agencies deemed unnecessary as a means of modernizing the federal government. The Departments of Labor and Education would be combined into the Department of Education and the Workforce (see page 5 of this issue of the newsletter). The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) would become the Department of Health and Public Welfare and would absorb nutrition assistance programs into its mission. The plan would create a Council on Public Assistance within the Department. The Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) food-related responsibilities would be moved to the Department of Agriculture and the FDA would be renamed the Federal Drug Administration. Other proposals would shift the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Whether any of these initiatives will materialize will depend on whether congressional approval is required. Some opposition can be expected not only from legislators, but also from interest groups that have developed relationships with these departments and agencies. Realignment will result in shifts in power and produce changing patterns of influence. In many cases, reorganizations disrupt existing relationships in ways that produce sets of winners and losers. Little motivation exists to want to become a member of the latter group.
Other Articles from TRENDS June 2018
WORDS AND THEIR PLACEMENT REALLY MATTER
Apart from gestures and semiotic influences, such as wearing a white coat and having a stethoscope, communication between a health professional and a patient relies heavily on language in the form of words—whether spoken or written. Read More
DEVELOPMENTS IN HIGHER EDUCATION
Two issues in higher education attracted a considerable amount of attention in June 2018. The newest is an announcement by the Trump Administration to merge the Departments of Labor and Education into a single Department of Education and the Workforce...Read More
AVAILABLE RESOURCES ACCESSIBLE ELECTRONICALLY
- Academic Medical Centers And High-Need, High-Cost Patients: A Call To Action
- Youth Risk Behavior Survey Results And Trends Report
- New America’s Survey On Higher Education
ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE, ROBOTS, AND THE HEALTH CARE INDUSTRY
The aging of the U.S. population and the extent to which multiple morbidities characterize a large segment of that sub-group provides assurance that the health care industry will continue to be robust for decades...Read More
PRESIDENT’S CORNER — ASAHP MEMBER FOCUS
Name and Title: Kim L. Halula, PhD, Associate Dean, College of Health Sciences... Read More
AFFORDABLE CARE ACT DEVELOPMENTS
Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) become law in 2010, Congressional Republicans have vowed to repeal and replace it. With the advent...Read More
QUICK STAT (SHORT, TIMELY, AND TOPICAL)
Genetic testing and spending on that testing have grown rapidly since the mapping of the human genome in 2003, but it is not widely known how many tests there are, how they are used, and how paid for...Read More
HEALTH TECHNOLOGY CORNER
The results of a study published on April 18, 2018 in the open access journal npj Digital Medicine is based on an evaluation of the effectiveness of using Twitter to search for individuals who become lost due to dementia...Read More
THE WALKING CORPSE SYNDROME
Page one of this issue of TRENDS is on the topic of communication as expressed by the use of words. An error made in speaking can be referred to as...Read More