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  • Washington Highlights

    AAMC Urges Administration to Articulate and Promote Support for Science, Diversity

    Tannaz Rasouli, Sr. Director, Public Policy & Strategic Outreach

    In a Dec. 19 letter to Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Acting Secretary of Health and Human Services Eric Hargan, AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, MD, urged “a strong commitment to the full scope of science, health care, social services, diversity, and public health programs” at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

    Specifically, the letter references the department’s upcoming FY 2019 budget request, and expresses appreciation for remarks by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Brenda Fitzgerald, MD, that “there are no banned words at CDC.” CDC and HHS issued the clarification in response to a press report that budget analysts were being discouraged from using specific words in the agency’s upcoming budget materials.

    Acknowledging the importance of allowing HHS staff to articulate the value of evidence-based and inclusive programming in the budget request, the letter also emphasizes that beyond just the terminology, the administration’s policies must also reflect such a commitment. The letter notes, “We call on you to affirm your commitment to the nation’s health in FY 2019 by promoting policy recommendations that enhance the well-being of all Americans, including the most vulnerable among us, and by proposing robust investments across the full range of HHS programming.”