As members of the U.S. Senate take time during the Memorial recess to consider the American Health Care Act (AHCA), advocates should take a moment to speak out about what this legislation might mean for their healthcare coverage and access to care.
If the AHCA becomes law, tens of millions of people would lose their health care coverage. By 2026, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that 23 million Americans will be left uninsured. The AHCA would also cut $834 billion in federal Medicaid funding, leaving 14 million Medicaid recipients uninsured the first year it is enacted, including veterans, elderly individuals, children, and people with disabilities. Older or lower income Americans with pre-existing conditions could see their premiums increase by 800%, consuming 61% of their income, according to FamiliesUSA. Read more from their blog here.
The AHCA will also allow states to waive the 10 essential health benefits requirement created by the ACA, including such things as trips to the emergency room, prescription drugs (including chemotherapy), mental health services, and preventive care and screenings. These changes could leave cancer patients or those with preexisting conditions unable to afford health insurance. Read more about the essential health benefits that the ACA established on healthcare.gov.
There are 15.5 million Americans to date who have or are living with cancer—15.5 million Americans who depend on our health care system to put their protect them, regardless of pre-existing conditions or income levels, and offer them affordable and effective options.
Now is the time to remind your Senator that the AHCA is not the solution. Join the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtag, #ProtectOurCare and contact your Senator using our engagement: Tweet Now!
Grassroots advocacy starts at home, a simple tweet is the first step in becoming engaged.