Press Room

Senate Discussion Draft Eliminates Important Public Health Programs; Pushes Costs to States

ARLINGTON, VA (June 22, 2017)—Michael Fraser, executive director of ASTHO, issued the following statement today on the Senate’s discussion draft of the healthcare bill, “Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 H.R. 1628”:

“We are deeply disappointed the Senate discussion draft legislation includes a repeal of the Prevention and Public Health Fund in FY18. Repealing this fund, coupled with sequestration this year, would result in a more than 12 percent cut to CDC programs in just a few months, and this will affect the other federal programs that keep our nation healthy. This move will leave states and territories unable to adequately address public health and healthcare needs and undermine efforts to prevent disease and promote health in every state and territory nationwide.

Eliminating the Prevention and Public Health Fund would result in cuts to programs that provide critical childhood immunizations, help smokers quit their deadly tobacco habit, and fight obesity and diabetes, among other state priorities. We strongly encourage the Senate to oppose the repeal of the Prevention and Public Health Fund in the discussion draft legislation.”


ASTHO is the national nonprofit organization representing the public health agencies of the United States, the U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia, as well as the more than 100,000 public health professionals these agencies employ. ASTHO members, the chief health officials of these jurisdictions, are dedicated to formulating and influencing sound public health policy and to ensuring excellence in state-based public health practice.