“The rush to appoint a cabinet of anti-woman, anti-worker policymakers continued last night when the U.S. Senate confirmed Rep. Tom Price – an extreme opponent of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and federal funding for women’s health care – to serve as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). Last night’s vote was another painful example of senators putting partisanship ahead of the country’s best interests. This vote may cost millions of women and families the access to essential health services they need.
President Trump has no mandate to defund Planned Parenthood, deny women’s access to birth control and abortion care, or take health coverage away from millions of people. Yet that is, and has long been, Rep. Price’s agenda. He has consistently sought to undermine women’s health and promote policies that make it harder for those most in need to get quality, affordable health coverage and care.
Price’s opposition to the ACA, his willingness to cut Medicaid and Medicare, and his relentless opposition to abortion and contraceptive care are deeply disturbing. The ACA has been the greatest advance for women’s health in a generation; it provided coverage to 20 million previously uninsured people and millions with pre-existing conditions who could not get insurance before it became law. Yet Price voted more than 60 times to repeal it. The replacement proposals he supports are wholly inadequate and would leave millions without affordable, comprehensive health coverage.
Price has repeatedly voted to defund Planned Parenthood, which provides essential preventive health services such as cancer screenings, birth control, and sexually transmitted infection and HIV testing to 2.5 million people annually. His opposition to contraceptive coverage and abortion care harms women whose access to the full range of reproductive and preventive health services is critical not only to their health and well-being but also to their ability to pursue an education, hold jobs, achieve economic security and function as free and equal members of society.
This appointment could have tragic consequences for the heath and economic security of millions of people. We intend to watch closely and hold Secretary Price accountable for strong, effective implementation and enforcement of all laws protecting the health and well-being of this nation’s women and families.”