NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Wednesday’s assembly of the Tennessee Senate Well being and Wellness Committee was purported to be a short introduction to the state’s new well being commissioner, Dr. Ralph Alvarado.
“He simply obtained to Nashville, so if we might, that is extra of an introductory assembly right now,” mentioned Sen. Rusty Crowe, a Johnson Metropolis Republican.
However that is not precisely what occurred.
Sen. Jeff Yarbro, D-Nashville, determined his issues could not wait.
“We made this type of abrupt choice to chop the applications,” mentioned Senator Yarbro. “I do know legislators from each events and in lots of areas of the state who’ve issues about this and wish to hear from the division how finest to maneuver ahead.”
Final week, the state of Tennessee formally rejected a CDC grant that awards hundreds of thousands of dollars to HIV care and prevention applications in Tennessee’s 99 counties. Technically, Dr. Alvarado did not need to reply Yarbro’s questions, however here is what he mentioned.
“This administration is taking a look at areas the place it may reduce its reliance on federal funds and assume a lot better independence in that space. Due to this fact, the state has decided at the moment that it’s in one of the best curiosity of Tennesseans that the state assume direct monetary and administrative features”. accountability for these companies,” Alvarado mentioned. “I believe the state is taking a look at how an efficient program shall be applied on the state degree, and we will even notify the group of the small print as quickly as acceptable.”
After the convention. Yarbro was nonetheless pissed off.
“He is new on the job and I do not know if it is his choice or one he inherited, however we will need to get higher solutions than the division has been capable of talk up to now,” mentioned Senator Yarbro. . “I do not care who helps individuals. I do not know why the governor would care who goes out and tries to assist Tennesseans not get sick and die of AIDS.”
Two docs additionally attended the assembly and have been fast to precise their discontent.
“I might prefer to understand how you are changing that funding,” mentioned Dr. Amy Gordon Bono, an inside medication doctor in central Tennessee. “Proper now, we should broaden entry to well being care, not inhumanely restrict it.”
Senator Crowe says that Dr. Alvarado will return to the Well being and Wellness Committee to reply questions in March.
NewsChannel 5 requested the Tennessee Division of Well being if we might interview the brand new commissioner earlier than or after Wednesday’s assembly, however that request was denied.