The medical establishment is praising the appointment of Tom Price, MD, to lead the Department of Health and Human Services. That enthusiasm is not shared by women's health advocates and some Democrats in Congress.
President-elect Donald Trump's nomination of Rep. Tom Price, (R-GA), an orthopedic surgeon and avowed opponent of Obamacare, was greeted with high praise by the major professional lobbies in the healthcare sector.
"As healthcare continues to evolve and as care becomes more patient centered, Dr. Price's experience both as a surgeon, along with practicing at Emory University and Grady Memorial Hospital, makes him uniquely qualified to lead the Department of Health and Human Services," said American Hospital Association CEO Rick Pollack.
"He has spent most of his career working in hospitals as an orthopedic surgeon, and his experience as a provider of care will serve patients well in this new role. We have worked with him as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee and as Chairman of the House Budget Committee. His clinical knowledge along with his congressional experience make him an impressively qualified candidate for HHS secretary."
Patrice A. Harris, MD, chair of the American Medical Association Board of Trustees, urged the Senate to "promptly consider and confirm Dr. Price for this important role."
"The American Medical Association strongly supports the nomination of Dr. Tom Price to become the next Secretary of Health and Human Services. His service as a physician, state legislator and member of the U.S. Congress provides a depth of experience to lead HHS," Harris said.
"Dr. Price has been a leader in the development of health policies to advance patient choice and market-based solutions as well as reduce excessive regulatory burdens that diminish time devoted to patient care and increase costs."
Marilyn Tavenner, president and CEO of America's Health Insurance Plans, said that Price has for years "been committed to ensuring that patients and consumers are well-served. He will bring a balanced and thoughtful perspective to his role as Secretary of HHS. We look forward to working with him to promote competition, increase choice, and lower costs for every consumer."
John Commins is a senior editor at HealthLeaders.