The proposal for the 2020 Budget Plan includes many losses for health programs and services. Perhaps the most devastating is a decrease in funding for the National Cancer Institute (NCI).
The “Budget For a Better America” is $ 4.7 billion. An amount of $291 million is for a new initiative to end the HIV epidemic in the United States. It’s also designated for childhood cancer, as Trump promoted in his February State of the Union address.
Advocates say these “wins” will cause Medicare and Medicaid cuts.
“During the past four years, Congress has prioritized medical research because of the extraordinary number of scientific opportunities that now exist to save the lives of cancer patients and improve the quality of their lives, clearly, this is not the time to be cutting the lifesaving research that the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute so effectively support,” said Elizabeth Jaffee, president of the American Association for Cancer Research.
The National Cancer Institute would get the largest decrease in budget: a $897 million reduction. The National Institutes of Health would get a 12% reduction. The National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases would get the second largest cut: $769 million. The National Genome Research Institute would lose $80 million. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention would lose $35 million from it’s cancer screening and prevention programs. The National Institutes of Health would get a 12% reduction in funding, putting them down at $34 billion.
Trump suggested that $50 million will be allotted for the childhood cancer initiative. This will help to kickstart research on pediatric cancer and ideally new treatments.
The budget proposal also states a cut in Medicare by $845 billion, some of which would come from efforts to keep the costs of prescription drugs down. The budget also includes a cap on out-of-pocket cost for elderly patients. Funding for the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion provision will also be decreased. This means states will be able to administer their own programs and work requirements.
“We strongly oppose the White House budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2020, which would stall our nation’s progress against cancer and impede access to needed care for the millions of Americans dealing with cancer, we also urged policymakers to preserve and enhance access to high-quality cancer care for all Americans by rejecting the proposed changes to Medicaid and Medicare,” said Monica Bertagnolli, the president of American Society of Clinical Oncology.