Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Pa., objects to President Donald Trump's nomination of Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz to an assistant secretary job overseeing mental health and substance use, according to a Monday statement.
Murphy authored the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act that created the position within the Department of Health and Human Services. He said he was raising a "red flag" to the nomination of McCance-Katz, according to a tweet.
McCance-Katz was chief medical officer of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration, which is at the heart of Murphy's objection.
"We must end the era of silly, feel-good, anti-scientific, redundant, and wasteful actions at the (SAMHSA) and across all federal programs," he said.
"The anti-medical approach to mental illness and addiction over the past decade has too often made the care for those with serious mental illness considerably worse," he added.
When McCance-Katz was at SAMHSA, Murphy said the organization dealt with "questionable hiring practices, no accountability for federal grants, an anti-medical approach to serious mental illness and substance abuse treatment and most importantly, the continued upward rise of suicide and substance abuse deaths."
The congressman said he created the assistant secretary position "to bring accountability, effectiveness, and coordination" to federal mental health programs. As for the secretary position, "We must have someone reliably and resolutely committed in word and deed for these critical changes to our nation's dilapidated and deadly mental health and substance abuse care," Murphy said.
"The lives of millions of Americans depend on it," he added.
In November 2016, McCance-Katz herself criticized SAMHSA in a National Review piece.
"What I found was an agency that had lost its way," she wrote.
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.