LinkPad: Obama's budget proposal & health care

This week's LinkPad focuses on the response to President Obama's Fiscal Year 2013 Budget Proposal  and its potential negative impact on access to health care, job creation and innovation.

  • According to an article by Bloomberg's Alex Wayne, "President Barack Obama's budget plan would trim spending on federal health programs at the expense of drugmakers, hospitals and nursing homes while seeking nearly $1 billion for carrying out the 2010 health-care law." As Wayne remarks, Obama's proposal takes a flawed approach by focusing solely on budget cuts. The article cites the projected job losses from the Medicare rebate proposal and cuts to long-term care hospitals and nursing homes as potential shortcomings, which may negatively affect health care access in the United States.
  • In a statement released by Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), President and CEO, John Castellani discussed the impact the proposal would have on the biopharmaceutical industry. In his words, "Despite Obama's many pronouncements to support innovation, advance biomedical research, promote job creation and control health care costs for seniors, his 2013 budget proposal flies in the face of these important goals."
  • On Monday, Howard Gleckman of Forbes wrote an article entitled, "What Obama's Budget Would Mean for Seniors."  The article highlights changes in Medicare, Medicaid and services for older Americans based upon the president's proposal. Some of the adjustments Gleckman notes include higher premiums in Medicare Parts B and D for about 25% of Medicare beneficiaries, increased taxes on health care providers (e.g. nursing homes), and reduction in funding by one-third for aging and disability resource centers.

The US biopharmaceutical industry helps cement America's global competitiveness and drive economic growth. Enacting the President Obama's budget proposal threatens innovation, job creation, access to health care, and American  prominence in  this vital industry.