Health & Disability Advocates was disappointed that the House of Representatives passed HR 1628 – The American Health Care Act (AHCA). Despite assurances that the AHCA will ensure better coverage at less cost, the AHCA will instead:
- Cause an estimated 24 million people to lose coverage
- Give states the option to remove cost and coverage protections for people with pre-existing conditions
- Reduce Medicaid funding to all states by $880 billion over the next ten years
- Increase out-of-pocket costs for seniors
“Illinois is home to 5.6 million people with pre-existing conditions and over 1.8 million seniors,” says Barbara Otto, Chief Executive Officer of Health & Disability Advocates. “Passing the AHCA now threatens their health coverage as well as millions more who may not be able to afford coverage due to lower levels of financial assistance built into this bill.”
The American Health Care Act represents a step back from the progress made over the last 7 years to see that more Americans receive basic and vital health care coverage. It will make coverage more expensive seniors and end Medicaid expansion, meaning millions of Americans could lose coverage that they currently receive.
In addition, the bill makes a massive financial cut to the Medicaid program which means that states across the country will have to make the painful choice of either cutting services, removing people from Medicaid, and/or cutting payments they make to providers.
No state, including the state of Illinois, can afford to have its residents endure such a devastating impact.
Health & Disability Advocates will continue to advocate against policies and legislation, such as the AHCA, that act as barriers to the services and supports that people, especially those with complex health conditions, require in order to live the lives they choose.