Donald Trump announced on Tuesday that he has put an abrupt end to a pentagon-led proposal to cut military health care by $2.2 billion.
Politico reported on Sunday that Secretary of Defense Mark Esper was eyeing cutting pentagon costs by way of reducing the department’s healthcare expenditures.
The proposed cut to the military health system over the next five years is part of a sweeping effort Esper initiated last year to eliminate inefficiencies within the Pentagon’s coffers. But two senior defense officials say the effort has been rushed and driven by an arbitrary cost-savings goal, and argue that the cuts to the system will imperil the health care of millions of military personnel and their families as the nation grapples with Covid-19.
Esper and his deputies have argued that America’s private health system can pick up the slack.
Trump swiftly responded that he has made the final decision to reject any proposals that would reduce the healthcare capacity of the DOD.
“A proposal by Pentagon officials to slash Military Healthcare by $2.2 billion dollars has been firmly and totally rejected by me,” Trump tweeted on Monday. “We will do nothing to hurt our great Military professionals & heroes as long as I am your President. Thank you!”
According to The Hill, the proposed budget cuts would affect some 9.5 million active-duty personnel, military retirees, and their families who depend on the military health care system which operates hundreds of healthcare facilities worldwide.
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