Joe Biden’s Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra told Congress on Wednesday that reports of his own department’s fee schedule for payments to medical providers are “misinformation” as he struggled to deny the existence of racial-preference procedures in HHS.
Becerra was questioned by Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL) during a hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee, who asked him directly if there is a HHS physician fee schedule that provides for higher fees to reward government approved anti-racism activism.
Becerra responded that a schedule exists that “takes into account that we have great disparity” in America for persons seeking health care. All Becerra would admit is that his department is “moving toward a system” that will provide equal access to health care.
When pressed on whether the fee schedule calls for different weights based on race, Becerra only said that the policies are not “based solely” on race.
After the hearing, Palmer posted a tweet stating the “left’s woke agenda is attempting to divide this country along economic and racial lines.” He added that Americans must stand up to defeat radical race-based rules like the ones he asked Becerra about at the hearing.
The Merit-Based Incentive Payment System adopted last December by HHS includes race-based fee incentives. The department’s policy provides that medical providers should commit to “anti-racism” and acknowledge an understanding that race is a “political and social construct” and not a physiological attribute. Of course, that requires medical professionals to provide health care based on legal and political standards rather than medical science.
That commitment is required to include a review of medical providers’ office policies, including “value statements and clinical practice guidelines.”
Becerra deflected Palmer’s questions that directly cited HHS policy as “disinformation” and “misinformation.”
Becerra’s professional training and experience is not in medicine or health care but is in law and politics. Before being appointed to head HHS by Joe Biden, Becerra acted as California Attorney General from 2017 until 2021.
Do No Harm chairman Dr. Stanley Goldfarb told Fox News that it is “highly alarming” that the HHS Secretary denied the existence of the department’s rule that provides “higher compensation for doctors if they promulgate an ‘anti-racism’ plan.”