Basics of Budget Reconciliation and the Connection to Health Policy

Download an overview of this event for easy sharing »

Budgetary and spending pressures heavily influence the design of Congressional policy changes, especially in health care. Budget Reconciliation is a special legislative process, created in the 1970s, that is intended to facilitate tax and spending changes to meet a recommended Congressional Budget Resolution cost or saving target. However, because the process allows members of Congress to circumvent standard rules and procedures, it has been increasingly used as a mechanism by both political parties to enact significant policy changes.

This briefing provided a high-level overview of the budget reconciliation process, including unique rules and restrictions, historical uses, and its use as a tool to advance legislative priorities in Congress. Panelists also discussed potential applications of reconciliation to address national economic and health policy concerns of the 117th Congress and the new administration, such as COVID-19 relief, economic stimulus, and equitable health care access and affordability.


  • Sarah Kuehl Egge, MPP, Principal, SplitOak Strategies
  • Purva Rawal, Ph.D., Principal, CapView Strategies
  • Rodney L. Whitlock, Ph.D., M.A., Vice President, McDermott+Consulting
  • Kate Sullivan Hare, Vice President for Policy and Communications, Alliance for Health Policy (moderator)