The presidential election was historic in many regards, including the first woman as a major party nominee and a nominee with no previous public office or military experience. The Republican party will now have control of the White House, both Houses of Congress, and the possibility of a conservative Supreme Court. Click here to see the NY Times’ election maps.
The question before those of us focused on kidney disease is what will President-Elect Trump and the Republican party do with their new political power? What will the first priorities be? What does this election mean for healthcare including insurance plans in the Affordable Care Act (also referred to as “Obamacare”), business’ group health plans, Medicaid expansion, drug pricing reform efforts, and value-based care and delivery system reforms that were implemented under President Obama as a method of improving patient outcomes?
We can expect the President-Elect and Republican Congress to make the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act one of their first actions. They also may pursue funding Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) under a block grant formula. For a full list of the President-Elect and Republican leadership’s policy positions read this release by Deloitte.
Typically, significant legislative changes are difficult to attain and we do not know what this portends for healthcare in the U.S. The Republicans still need to figure out what they want to replace the Affordable Care Act with, if they want to keep components of it, what method of repeal to pursue (via legislation or via Executive Order), and how to deal with opposition by healthcare stakeholders and the Democratic minority. We will get our first real glances through President-Elect Trump’s selections for cabinet positions and during February when President Trump offers Congress his Fiscal Year 2018 budget plan.
With all the changes expected, now is the time to renew your efforts to educate your elected officials and their staffs at the federal and state level. Use resources like these fact sheets to educate and inform them of the impact that kidney disease has on patients, families and providers in your congressional district and state. Sign up to be an advocate with NKF and allow us to work with you to make sure that kidney disease patients are protected when changes begin to come forward. Contact NKF’s advocacy staff at firstname.lastname@example.org or apply to be part of the Kidney Advocacy Committee (KAC).
The National Kidney Foundation will continue to advocate for kidney disease patients, living donors and their families to ensure that healthcare policy continues to benefit patients and their families. NKF historically has had strong champions in both political parties and we will continue to rely on and expand our support in Congress and the federal health agencies. Please join us in this effort!
Information and statistics on the election:
|U.S. Senate||52||46||2 (Vote with Democrats)|
|U.S. House||238||193||(4 undecided races)|
Expected congressional leadership:
|Senate Majority Leadership||Senate Minority Leadership|
|Majority Leader: Mitch McConnell (KY)
Majority Whip: John Cornyn (TX)
|Minority Leader: Charles Schumer (NY)
Minority Whip: Richard Durbin (IL)
U.S. House of Representatives
|House Majority Leadership||House Minority Leadership|
|Speaker: Paul Ryan (WI)
Majority Leader: Kevin McCarthy (CA)
Majority Whip: Steve Scalise (LA)
|Minority Leader: Nancy Pelosi (CA)
Minority Whip: Steny Hoyer (MD)
Asst. Democratic Leader: James Clyburn (SC)
Congressional committee leadership related to health care policy:
|Committee||Republican Chair||Democratic Ranking Member|
|Senate Appropriations||Sen. Thad Cochran (MS)||Sen. Pat Leahy (VT)|
|Senate Finance||Sen. Orrin Hatch (UT)||Sen. Ron Wyden (OR)|
|Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pension||Sen. Lamar Alexander (TN)||Sen. Patty Murray (WA)|
|House Appropriations||Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ)||Rep. Nita Lowey (NY)|
|House Energy & Commerce||Either Rep. John Shimkus (IL) or Rep. Greg Walden (OR)||Rep. Frank Pallone (NJ)|
|House Ways & Means||Rep. Kevin Brady (TX)||Rep. Sander Levin (MI)|