Capitol Correspondence - 10.09.18

Health Advocates Ask HHS About Funds Diverted from Department for Detained Migrants

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ANCOR is sharing this Politico Pro article because we learned that HHS has moved funding from disability programs towards the care of detained migrant children and their families.

“Public health organizations want HHS Secretary Alex Azar to explain recent reports that he will transfer more than $440 million to cover the cost of caring for migrant children and their families, some of whom the Trump administration separated at the border.

‘There is widespread support throughout the community to care for immigrant children and families, but redirecting funding from already underfunded programs is deeply concerning,’ more than 100 groups — including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Nurses Association and Trust for America’s Health — wrote to Azar on Thursday.

POLITICO in July reported that HHS would need to transfer hundreds of millions of dollars to cover these costs. But the agency waited until the spotlight shifted away from the migrant crisis and the HHS funding package for fiscal year 2019 was hammered out.

— The answers that advocates say they need. They’re frustrated by piecemeal reports from HHS, which has sent several letters with different funding information to lawmakers and has yet to issue a formal statement.”