Becerra Confirmation Hearings Cover Pandemic Plans, More Provider Funds

Posted on Monday, March 1, 2021

Congressional hearings last week for Xavier Becerra, President Biden’s nominee to be the next Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), revealed a core of Republican opposition to his confirmation, but it appears he has strong support from his fellow Democrats.

If confirmed, Becerra would be the first Latino to serve as Secretary of Health & Human Services.

Becerra, a former California Attorney General, and a Democratic Congressman from the same state, told congressional committees he would follow the science and data about extending or ending the public health emergency (PHE) and support President Biden’s Medicare buy-in proposals.

Becerra also told Congress he could use provider relief funds to assist struggling health care providers, such as nursing homes.

“Becerra also discussed the importance of rural health care with Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), who noted Becerra’s health care experience has been with densely-populated urban areas. However, Becerra replied that while he “represented one of the most densely populated areas of the country, we had some of the greatest disparities … But, again, rural communities do face a different challenge – 15 miles is very different.”

Source: NAHC Report

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