AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) Chief Public Policy Officer Karen Fisher, JD, issued the following statement on the passage of a continuing resolution (CR) that will fund the federal government through Dec. 20 and temporarily extend certain health programs, including the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), community health centers, teaching health centers, and the National Health Service Corps (NHSC). The CR also will delay reductions in Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) payments through Dec. 20.
“The AAMC is relieved Congress voted for the second time to avoid a government shutdown, delay cuts to the Medicaid DSH program, and continue PCORI’s authorization in today’s continuing resolution. However, we continue to urge policymakers to work together in a bipartisan manner to finalize legislation that includes sustained, meaningful funding growth for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other vital health care programs, as well as rescind the Medicaid DSH cuts and reauthorize PCORI for 10 years before this new stopgap measure expires.
Continuing resolutions create inefficiencies and uncertainty for agencies like the NIH and the Health Resources and Services Administration that are critical to patients, especially those with life-threatening and chronic diseases and those in underserved and rural areas. Further delays in finalizing FY 2020 funding levels or reverting to a long-term stopgap that freezes funding at FY 2019 levels would slow progress toward cures and impede our ability to address major public health challenges.”
The Association of American Medical Colleges is a not-for-profit association dedicated to transforming health care through innovative medical education, cutting-edge patient care, and groundbreaking medical research. Its members comprise all 154 accredited U.S. and 17 accredited Canadian medical schools; nearly 400 major teaching hospitals and health systems, including 51 Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers; and more than 80 academic societies. Through these institutions and organizations, the AAMC serves the leaders of America’s medical schools and teaching hospitals and their 173,000 faculty members, 89,000 medical students, 129,000 resident physicians, and more than 60,000 graduate students and postdoctoral researchers in the biomedical sciences. Additional information about the AAMC and its member medical schools and teaching hospitals is available at www.aamc.org.