Sara Lonardo, Kimberly N. Alleyne,,, (202) 730-7332, (202) 730-7392

Issued February 01, 2017

My patients cannot afford the cost of Tom Price

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Congressional Republicans used a procedural maneuver today to break their own rules and jam through the Senate Finance Committee’s vote on Rep. Tom Price as Health and Human Services secretary without one Democrat voting. Vanessa Patricelli, an orthopedic trauma nurse from Seattle, traveled to Washington yesterday to stand up for her patients and for working families. She issued this statement in response to the Committee’s approval of Price.

“President Trump wants Tom Price to make our most important healthcare decisions. Every decision he makes will directly affect our freedom to make good medical decisions without fear, our families’ ability to live a healthier life, and our financial security. What’s alarmingly clear from his record in Congress is that Tom Price will quietly side with corporations and profits over patients every time. In fact, members of Congress were so concerned over his record that they manipulated committee rules to advance his nomination without one Democrat present.  

“What my patients value most is the security of affordable healthcare they can count on in these uncertain times. Tom Price would dismantle Medicaid and the healthcare that 1 in 4 Americans are counting on. He would end coverage for 52 million people with pre-existing conditions, such as diabetes and asthma, and he would ensure that drug companies and insurance companies continue to reap record profits.

“I see real fear in the faces of my patients when they talk about losing their healthcare coverage and the unknown of what’s next. And as a nurse, I have as much fear as they do. We cannot afford to go back to the days when patients delay seeking treatment for a serious condition until it’s too difficult to treat, or in some cases, too late to treat at all. 

“Americans will not stand for a country where our government drives up healthcare costs for working people and delivers less care. Just as millions of people have risen up against Trump’s unjust and immoral immigration executive order and against the nominations of other members of his corporate Cabinet, we will continue to speak up for an America where everyone has an opportunity to improve their health and their families’ lives.

“As a nurse and as an American, I urge the members of the U.S. Senate to vote against his confirmation.”