he Coalition for Health Funding (CHF) hosted its fall congressional briefing on Wednesday, November 18, bringing individuals on Capitol Hill together to describe the opportunity costs of continued austerity on America’s health. The briefing was coordinated with support from the Congressional Public Health Caucus under the theme, Public Health 101: Opportunity Lost: Struggles to Meet Health Demands in an Era of Austerity.

The following panel of speakers discussed the tangible impact of federal budget cuts on public health and health research:

  • Sandra B. Eskin, Director of Food Safety, The Pew Charitable Trusts
  • Jessica Hayes, Executive Director, Illinois Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Professional Certification Association, Inc.
  • Clarence Lam, MD, MPH, Preventive Medicine Residency Program Director, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
  • Benjamin L. Margolis, MD, Associate Chair for Research, Internal Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School
  • Lisa Pivec, Senior Director, Public Health, Cherokee Nation

As a long-standing active member of the CHF, AACOM participated as a silver-level sponsor this year.

For the last three years, the CHF and its members have documented the impact of austerity on public health and health research. Its work has shown there are both real consequences of budget cuts, such as job losses, longer wait lists, and curtailed services, as well as opportunity costs. According to CHF, there are a litany of emerging health demands—protecting our food supply, curbing the opioid abuse epidemic, investing in the next generation of health professionals and scientists—that must be addressed to keep Americans safe and healthy, and it is necessary that we meet these demands in this “era of austerity.”

About the CHF

The Coalition for Health Funding is the oldest and largest nonprofit alliance working to preserve public health investments in the best interest of all Americans. For more information, visit

Inside OME Header
November 2015
Vol. 9, No. 11

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