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Andrew Harnik/AP

Tom Price, President Trump's nominee for Health and Human Services secretary, testified for nearly four hours Tuesday before the Senate Finance Committee, the one that will vote on his nomination. The testimony follows the release of more reports questioning Price's ethics.

Price didn't promise that no one would lose coverage during the transition away from Obamacare, but said all would have "access" to coverage. And he declared that he would "carry out the law of the land" until there's a replacement for the law, even as he implements President Trump's executive order calling on HHS to relax the rules.

Read on for some of the key things Price said.

  • Wouldn't promise that no one would lose coverage under the executive order. Repeated commitment everyone will have "access" to coverage.
  • Also wouldn't commit to waiting for a replacement plan before he implements the executive order.
  • But he did say that until Congress repeals and replaces Obamacare, "Our commitment is to carry out the law of the land."
  • Said his goal "is to decrease the number of uninsured individuals in the population age under 18 and over age 18."
  • On contraception coverage, which is free under Obamacare: "The system we ought to have in place should allow women to purchase the kind of contraception that they desire."
  • On Medicare negotiating drug prices, noted pharmacy benefit managers already do this. However, he added there could be "a better way to do that. If there is, I'm certainly open to it."
  • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation has gotten "off track" in its scope, but could be a "vehicle" to support innovation.
  • Need to "make sure nobody loses their insurance or is unable to gain insurance because of a preexisting condition."
  • On whether Medicaid block grants would cause people to lose coverage: No system he's proposed "would leave anybody without the opportunity to gain coverage."
  • Committed that every person with a disability on Medicaid will have "that coverage or greater."

Go deeper

Federal judge orders Trump administration to restore DACA

DACA recipients and their supporters rally outside the U.S. Supreme Court on June 18. Photo: Drew Angerer via Getty

A federal judge on Friday ordered the Trump administration to fully restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, giving undocumented immigrants who arrived in the U.S. as children a chance to petition for protection from deportation.

Why it matters: DACA was implemented under former President Obama, but President Trump has sought to undo the program since taking office. Friday’s ruling will require Department of Homeland Security officers to begin accepting applications starting Monday and guarantee that work permits are valid for two years.

Updated 55 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Fauci says he accepted Biden's offer to be chief medical adviser "on the spot" — The recovery needs rocket fuel.
  2. Health: CDC: It's time for "universal face mask use" — Death rates rising across the country — Study: Increased testing can reduce transmission.
  3. Economy: U.S. economy adds 245,000 jobs in November as recovery slows — America's hidden depression: K-shaped recovery threatens Biden administration.
  4. Cities: Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate
  5. Vaccine: What vaccine trials still need to do.
  6. World: UN warns "2021 is literally going to be catastrophic"
  7. 🎧 Podcast: Former FDA chief Rob Califf on the vaccine approval process.
2 hours ago - Health

Bay Area counties to enact stay-at-home order ahead of state mandate

Golden Gate Park. Photo: Justin Sullivan via Getty

Counties around the San Francisco Bay Area will adopt California’s new regional stay-at-home order amid surges in cases and ICU hospitalizations, health officials said Friday.

The big picture: California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a three-week stay-at-home order on Thursday that would go into effect in regions with less than 15% ICU capacity. Despite the Bay Area’s current 25.3% ICU capacity, health officials from Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Santa Clara, San Francisco and the city of Berkeley are moving ahead with a shelter-in-place mandate in the hopes of reducing risk.