The Health Secretary, on the Republican Bill
Secretary Thomas E. Price
The New York Times
March 15, 2017
On March 15, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Thomas E. Price, M.D., wrote a letter to the editor in the New York Times, responding to the publication’s March 14 editorial about the Congressional Budget Office’s score of the American Health Care Act. Secretary Price’s response stated:
In your March 14 editorial about the Congressional Budget Office’s score of the American Health Care Act, you wrote: “The numbers are the numbers. The C.B.O. has called it as it sees it, and the picture is clear.” As I’ve said, I strenuously disagree, and so did your editorial board.
As you wrote in a Feb. 3, 1994, editorial about President Bill Clinton’s health care proposal, “The Budget Office’s estimates of savings from health care reform, through no fault of its own, are guesswork.”
This week’s C.B.O. assessment, which you praise, finds that with almost no changes in subsidies or Medicaid, 14 million Americans will drop their insurance next year. That is worse than guesswork; it is simply unbelievable.
The Budget Office scored a Republican bill that is just one part of President Trump’s plan to provide affordable, quality health care to every American. It is a great disservice to your readers to ascribe such certainty to the Budget Office’s numbers, and to offer no mention of the other reforms in progress.