AAFP Statement: Family Physicians Applaud Daschle Nomination, Formation of Office on Health Reform
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Ted Epperly, M.D.
American Academy of Family Physicians
President-elect Obama has made an excellent choice in his nomination of former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle as secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services and director of the new White House Office on Health Reform.
By establishing the new office, President-elect Obama is signaling the importance he places on reforming our broken health care system and ensuring that all Americans have access to high-quality care. By naming Sen. Daschle as both director of this new office and secretary of HHS, President-elect Obama also is demonstrating his commitment to working with Congress in establishing a comprehensive plan that addresses patient access, quality of care, cost of care and an adequate health care workforce.
As a legislator, Sen. Daschle provided strong bipartisan leadership. These skills will prove vital in the upcoming Congress. He has a solid understanding of the issues facing our health care system, particularly the need to ensure patients have access to comprehensive care which helps prevent illness, ends fragmentation and duplication of services, and improves the quality of care.
Sen. Daschle has new and refreshing ideas that promise to serve as an agent of positive change for the health care system and the patients it serves.
The AAFP also commends President-elect Obama for naming Jeanne Lambrew as deputy director of the Office on Health Reform. Her experience as senior health policy analyst in the White House National Economic Council and with HHS make her uniquely qualified to ensure much-needed continuity in our nation’s health care policy.
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Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 110,600 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.
Approximately one in four of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is 240 million office visits each year — nearly 87 million more than the next largest medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.
To learn more about the specialty of family medicine, the AAFP's positions on issues and clinical care, and for downloadable multi-media highlighting family medicine, visit www.aafp.org/media. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, www.FamilyDoctor.org.