Republicans worry about healthcare law repeal's impact on health programs

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"The administration then diverts discretionary dollars to fund new programs. When the Affordable Care Act is repealed, many important programs like Community Health Centers and the [federal] Immunization program at the Centers for Disease Control will be in jeopardy because their base funding … has been so significantly reduced."

Shelby also raised concerns with the budget's flat-funding of medical research at the National Institutes of Health, at $31 billion. The administration says it is overhauling its NIH grant-making process in order to increase the number of new research grants.

Panel Chairman Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) also criticized the proposed budget, specifically its $4.5 billion cut to the $15 billion Prevention Fund he championed in the healthcare reform law.

"I don't know when we're going to learn that our mothers were right: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," Harkin said. "And that's true in healthcare."


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