Monthly Archives

January 2020

Supreme Court Decision Supports Trump and Republican Effort to Hide the Disastrous Implications of Their Health Care Repeal Lawsuit From the American Public

Washington, DC — Today, the Supreme Court rejected House Democrats and Democrat state Attorneys General’s request to grant expedited consideration of cert for the Trump-Republican lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act. This action all but guarantees that the court will not hear this case during the upcoming term, and the lawsuit will be remanded to a lower court judge who already ruled the entire law unconstitutional while millions of Americans’ health care will remain under attack. In response to their decision, Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach issued the following statement: 

“By likely getting their wish to postpone a Supreme Court decision on this destructive lawsuit until after the election, Donald Trump and the Republican Party have succeeded in their quest to spare themselves the political consequences of their effort to take away health care from 20 million Americans and protections for 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions. Instead, the health care millions of Americans remains under attack and the same judge who already declared the entire law null and void will remain in the driver’s seat. It’s time Donald Trump ended his war on America’s health care and the terrible threat to the health care of millions of Americans.”

Texas Lawsuit Days of Action: Coverage For Communities of Color

Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Trump administration and Republicans in Texas vs. United States, striking down as unconstitutional the ACA’s individual mandate and remanding to the lower court judge a final decision on what parts of the ACA should be eliminated – the very judge who has already ruled the entire law unconstitutional. If President Trump and Republicans have their way, 20 million Americans will lose their insurance coverage, 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stripped of their protections, and costs will go up for millions. 

“The Fifth Circuit’s disastrous decision on President Trump’s Texas lawsuit puts the health care of millions of Americans at risk. The court’s decision will impact every corner of the American health care system, including widening racial disparities in coverage rates and threatening health care access for communities of color across the country,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these days of action, we will be reminding Americans what’s really at stake if the courts ultimately overturn the health care law.” 

Days of Action: Day 11 of 11 focuses on Coverage For Communities of Color. To learn more about our Days of Action, visit our website.

What’s At Stake: Coverage For Communities of Color

The ACA helped reduce longstanding racial disparities in coverage rates, improving health care access for communities of color across the board. 

The ACA helped lower the uninsured rate for African Americans by more than one third. Before the passage of the ACA, more than 16 percent of the nearly 50 million Americans lacking health insurance were African Americans. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the ACA helped lower the uninsured rate for nonelderly African Americans by more than one third between 2013 and 2016 from 18.9 percent to 11.7 percent. 

Repealing Medicaid expansion would disproportionately harm communities of color. After the implementation of the ACA, gaps in insurance coverage narrowed the most in states that adopted Medicaid expansion. Moreover, communities of color make up significant proportions of the Medicaid population: Black Americans make up 13.4 percent of the U.S. population but 20 percent of Medicaid enrollees. Similarly, Latinos make up 30 percent of total Medicaid enrollees while only accounting for 18.3 percent of the U.S. population. 

Latinos stand to lose if the ACA is overturned. The percentage of people gaining health insurance under the ACA was higher for Latinos than for any other racial or ethnic group in the country. According to a study from Families USA, 5.4 million Latinos would lose coverage if the Texas lawsuit succeeds in overturning the ACA.  

Research confirms that the ACA improved health care access for communities of color: 

Commonwealth Fund Study Found That Medicaid Expansion Has Been Key To Improving Racial Equity In Health Insurance Coverage And Access To Care. “Uninsured rates for blacks, Hispanics, and whites declined in both expansion and nonexpansion states between 2013 and 2018. In addition, disparities in coverage between whites and blacks and Hispanics also narrowed over that time period in both sets of states… People living in Medicaid expansion states benefited the most in terms of coverage gains. All three groups reported lower uninsured rates in expansion states compared to nonexpansion states, and larger coverage improvements between 2013 and 2018. Coverage disparities in expansion states narrowed the most over the period, even though the disparities were smaller to begin with. The black–white coverage gap in those states dropped from 8.4 percentage points to 3.7 points, while the difference between Hispanic and white uninsured rates fell from 23.2 points to 12.7 points.” [Commonwealth Fund, 1/16/20

Washington Post: ACA Linked To Reduced Racial Disparities, Earlier Diagnosis And Treatment In Cancer Care. “Proponents of the embattled Affordable Care Act got additional ammunition Sunday: New research links the law to a reduction in racial disparities in the care of cancer patients and to earlier diagnoses and treatment of ovarian cancer, one of the most dangerous malignancies. According to researchers involved in the racial-disparity study, before the ACA went into effect, African Americans with advanced cancer were 4.8 percentage points less likely to start treatment for their disease within 30 days of being given a diagnosis. But today, black adults in states that expanded Medicaid under the law have almost entirely caught up with white patients in getting timely treatment, researchers said. Another study showed that after implementation of the law, ovarian cancer was diagnosed at earlier stages and that more women began treatment within a month. The speedier diagnoses and treatment were likely to have increased patients’ chances of survival, the researchers said.” [Washington Post, 6/2/19]

Black Women Were More Likely To Receive Care Because Of The ACA. “There has been an increase in the share of black women with a ‘usual source of care’—meaning a particular doctor’s office, clinic, or health center. In 2010, 83 percent of black women had a usual source of care. By 2014, the share had risen to 88.1 percent. Furthermore, black women have experienced a reduction among those who delayed or went without care due to cost. In 2010, 18.6 percent of black women ‘who had to delay or forgo care because of cost’; by 2014, only 15.1 percent of black women did so.” [Center for American Progress, 2/28/17

Bottom line: “Health coverage is especially important for African Americans and other racial and ethnic minorities because they often have worse health status than their white counterparts,” according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Coverage losses incurred by overturning the ACA would be devastating for communities of color and reverse the significant gains in health care access made by the law.

Texas Lawsuit Days of Action: Marketplace Signups & Financial Assistance

Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Trump administration and Republicans in Texas vs. United States, striking down as unconstitutional the ACA’s individual mandate and remanding to the lower court judge a final decision on what parts of the ACA should be eliminated – the very judge who has already ruled the entire law unconstitutional. If President Trump and Republicans have their way, 20 million Americans will lose their insurance coverage, 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stripped of their protections, and costs will go up for millions. 

“The Fifth Circuit’s disastrous decision on President Trump’s Texas lawsuit puts the health care of millions of Americans at risk. The court’s decision will impact every corner of the American health care system, eliminating both the individual marketplace and financial assistance that helps people purchase health insurance, while ripping coverage away from 20 million Americans across the country,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these days of action, we will be reminding Americans what’s really at stake if the courts ultimately overturn the health care law.” 

Days of Action: Day 10 of 11 focuses on Marketplace Signups & Financial Assistance. To learn more about our Days of Action, visit our website.

What’s At Stake:  Marketplace Signups & Financial Assistance

If The Texas Lawsuit Succeeds, The Individual Marketplace And Financial Assistance That Helps Individuals Purchase Health Insurance Will Be Eliminated. 

  • 11 Million People With Comprehensive Insurance Through The ACA Marketplace Could Lose Their Coverage. Without the ACA, more than 11 million people nationwide enrolled in the individual marketplace could lose coverage. 
  • Nine Million People In The Marketplaces Would Pay More For Coverage. Nearly 9 million people would lose financial assistance that helps them purchase health care in the marketplace. In 2019, the average monthly premium tax credit was $514

Thanks To The Republican Lawsuit, 20 Million People Could Lose Their Coverage

  • According to the Urban Institute, 19.9 million people could lose coverage by repealing the Affordable Care Act, meaning the number of uninsured Americans would increase from 30.4 million to 50.3 million, representing a leading to a 65 percent increase in the uninsured rate. As the uninsured rate swells, so will the amount of uncompensated care, which Urban predicts will grow by at least 82 percent.
  • States would lose important federal health care funding — an estimated reduction of $135 billion in the first year. The Urban Institute estimates that a full repeal of the ACA would reduce federal spending on Medicaid/CHIP care and Marketplace subsidies by nearly $135 billion, or 34.6 percent in the first year.
  • Millions of children could lose their coverage. Almost three million children nationwide gained coverage thanks to the ACA. If the law is overturned, many of these children will lose their insurance.
  • More than 5 million Latinos would lose coverage. The percentage of people gaining health insurance under the ACA was higher for Latinos than for any other racial or ethnic group in the country. According to a study from Families USA, 5.4 million Latinos would lose coverage if the lawsuit succeeds in overturning the ACA.

Texas Lawsuit Days of Action: Rural Health

Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Trump administration and Republicans in Texas vs. United States, striking down as unconstitutional the ACA’s individual mandate and remanding to the lower court judge a final decision on what parts of the ACA should be eliminated – the very judge who has already ruled the entire law unconstitutional. If President Trump and Republicans have their way, 20 million Americans will lose their insurance coverage, 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stripped of their protections, and costs will go up for millions. 

“The Fifth Circuit’s disastrous decision on President Trump’s Texas lawsuit puts the health care of millions of Americans at risk. The court’s decision will impact every corner of the American health care system including eliminating Medicaid expansion, which has served as a lifeline for rural Americans and has played a key role in fighting the opioid crisis in communities across the country,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these days of action, we will be reminding Americans what’s really at stake if the courts ultimately overturn the health care law.” 

Days of Action: Day 9 of 11 focuses on Rural Health. To learn more about our Days of Action, visit our website.

What’s At Stake: Rural Health

Rural Americans Stand To Lose If The Texas Lawsuit Overturns The ACA.

  • Nearly 1.7 million rural Americans gained coverage through Medicaid expansion under the ACA. 24 percent of Americans living in rural areas have health coverage through Medicaid.
  • In 2017, nearly 1 in 5 marketplace enrollees (1.6 million people) lived in rural areas. 
  • The uninsured rate for low-income adults dropped from 35 percent to 16 percent in rural areas and small towns in states that expanded Medicaid. 
  • Rural Americans are more likely to be uninsured than Americans living in non-rural areas. 

Medicaid Is A Lifeline For Rural Hospitals: 

  • The Affordable Care Act led to a $12 billion reduction in uncompensated care costs. Between 2013 and 2015, hospitals’ uncompensated care costs decreased by $12 billion, or roughly 30 percent. The majority of this reduction was concentrated in states that chose to expand Medicaid. 
  • 430 rural hospitals are at a high financial risk of closing. This represents roughly 21 percent of the country’s rural hospitals. 
  • 120 rural hospitals have closed since 2010. The vast majority closed in states that had not expanded Medicaid at the time of the hospital closure.

American Hospital Association, Federation Of American Hospitals, The Catholic Health Association Of The United States, And Association Of American Medical Colleges: “A Judicial Repeal Would Have Severe Consequences For America’s Hospitals, Which Would Be Forced To Shoulder The Greater Uncompensated-Care Burden That The ACA’s Repeal Would Create.” [American Hospital Association et. al, 6/14/18]

The ACA’s Medicaid Expansion Plays A Central Role In Fighting The Opioid Crisis

  • More than half of people with an opioid use disorder earn incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty line.
  • In 2014, Medicaid paid for 25 percent of all addiction treatment nationwide.
  • It is estimated that Medicaid expansion covers four in ten people with an opioid use disorder.
  • Among those with opioid addiction, people covered through Medicaid are more than twice as likely as those with private insurance or no insurance to receive treatment.  In 2016, 43 percent of people who had substance use disorders received treatment when they were covered through Medicaid, significantly higher than the 21 percent of those privately insured who received treatment and 23 percent of those who were uninsured and received treatment.
  • Medicaid expansion has reduced unmet need for substance use treatment by more than 18 percent. Recent research finds that Medicaid expanding reduced the unmet need for substance use treatment by 18.3 percent.

 

 

 

Texas Lawsuit Days of Action: Prescription Drug Costs

Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Trump administration and Republicans in Texas vs. United States, striking down as unconstitutional the ACA’s individual mandate and remanding to the lower court judge a final decision on what parts of the ACA should be eliminated – the very judge who has already ruled the entire law unconstitutional. If President Trump and Republicans have their way, 20 million Americans will lose their insurance coverage, 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stripped of their protections, and costs will go up for millions. 

“The Fifth Circuit’s disastrous decision on President Trump’s Texas lawsuit puts the health care of millions of Americans at risk. The court’s decision will impact every corner of the American health care system, making the high cost of prescription drugs even worse and threatening health care access for children, seniors, women, individuals with disabilities and LGBTQ Americans in communities across the country,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these days of action, we will be reminding Americans what’s really at stake if the courts ultimately overturn the health care law.” 

Days of Action: Day 8 of 11 focuses on Prescription Drug Costs. To learn more about our Days of Action, visit our website.

What’s At Stake: Prescription Drug Costs

If the ACA is overturned, the high cost of prescription drugs would only get worse:  

  • GONE: Rules that increase competition in the prescription drug market and help Americans access cheaper drugs. 
  • GONE: Consumer protections that prohibit drug companies from paying off doctors behind closed doors to influence the drugs they prescribe to patients.
  • GONE: Nearly 12 million seniors will have to pay more for prescription drugs because the Medicare ‘donut hole’ will be reopened.

ACA Repeal Means More Profits For Drug Companies And Higher Costs For Consumers. 

Consumers could be forced to pay more for drugs. The ACA’s Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act paved the way for the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve biosimilars, cheaper alternatives to expensive biologics. Without the ACA, approval of biosimilars will be in jeopardy, and drug companies may be less likely to invest in new biosimilar drugs. This change will make it harder for Americans to access low-cost alternatives to expensive biologic medications. It will also jeopardize the predicted $54 billion in savings that biosimilars are expected to produce between 2017 and 2026.

Drug companies would once again be allowed to pay doctors behind closed doors (to prescribe drugs you don’t necessarily need). Without the ACA’s Physician Payments Sunshine Act, Big Pharma will once again be allowed to make payments and offer gifts to doctors behind closed doors. When these payments are made with no transparency, they can create conflicts of interest and blur the line between objective and promotional research. The outcome of the Texas lawsuit has the potential to uproot the health care system all while giving drug companies even more power. 

Reopening the “donut hole” would make medications more expensive for 12 million seniors. If the entire ACA is overturned, seniors will have to pay more for prescription drugs because the Medicare “donut” hole will be reopened. From 2010 to 2016, “More than 11.8 million Medicare beneficiaries have received discounts over $26.8 billion on prescription drugs – an average of $2,272 per beneficiary,” according to a January 2017 Centers on Medicare and Medicaid Services report

Texas Lawsuit Days of Action: Protections for Women

Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Trump administration and Republicans in Texas vs. United States, striking down as unconstitutional the ACA’s individual mandate and remanding to the lower court judge a final decision on what parts of the ACA should be eliminated – the very judge who has already ruled the entire law unconstitutional. If President Trump and Republicans have their way, 20 million Americans will lose their insurance coverage, 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stripped of their protections, and costs will go up for millions. 

“The Fifth Circuit’s disastrous decision on President Trump’s Texas lawsuit puts the health care of millions of Americans at risk. The court’s decision will impact every corner of the American health care system, endangering health care for women and access to care for seniors, children, individuals with disabilities and LGBTQ Americans in communities across the country,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these days of action, we will be reminding Americans what’s really at stake if the courts ultimately overturn the health care law.” 

Days of Action: Day 7 of 11 focuses on Protections for Women. To learn more about our Days of Action, visit our website.

What’s At Stake: Protections for Women

If the ACA is overturned, key protections  for women would be ripped away overnight: 

  • GONE: Insurance companies will be able to charge women 50 percent more than men.
  • GONE: Contraception coverage for 60 million people who now have access to birth control with no out-of-pocket costs.
  • GONE: A ban on discrimination for women, LGBTQ Americans, and individuals with disabilities in health care settings. 
  • GONE: Essential protections for breastfeeding parents, including workplace standards and access to breast pumps with no out-of-pocket costs.   

Women Can Be Charged More Than Men For The Same Coverage. Prior to the ACA, women were often charged premiums on the nongroup market of up to 50 percent higher than men for the same coverage. Without the ACA, women would also lose guaranteed coverage of birth control and other preventive care services. Before the ACA, 1 in 5 women reported postponing or going without preventive care due to cost.

More than 60 million people could lose access to birth control with no out-of-pocket fees. The ACA guarantees that private health plans cover 18 methods of contraception and make them available to 62.4 million patients with no out-of-pocket costs. More than 99 percent of sexually-active women have used contraceptives at some point in their lifetimes, and approximately 60 percent of women of reproductive age currently use at least one birth control method. In addition to increasing access to this essential treatment, this ACA provision has saved money for women and their families: women saved $1.4 billion on birth control pills alone in 2013.

Women, LGBTQ Americans, and individuals with disabilities can face discrimination in health care settings. Section 1557 of the ACA prohibits discrimination the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability by any health program or activity receiving federal assistance. It also prohibits these types of discrimination in health programs and activities administered by HHS as well as the ACA marketplaces. 

Nursing parents would lose breastfeeding support and critical workplace protections. The Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to cover breastfeeding support and counseling, as well as breast pumps without cost-sharing for pregnant and nursing women. 

HEADLINES: Trump’s Tweets Are The “Diametric Opposite of Reality” Of His Record On Pre-Existing Conditions

Today, President Trump tweeted a bizarre lie that he alone “saved” protections for pre-existing conditions in health care. The press quickly debunked President Trump’s claim and reminded Americans of the truth about Trump’s disastrous health care agenda. 

Associated Press: AP FACT CHECK: No, Trump Didn’t Save Preexisting Conditions. “People with preexisting medical problems have health insurance protections because of President Barack Obama’s health care law, which Trump is trying to dismantle. One of Trump’s major alternatives to Obama’s law — short-term health insurance, already in place — doesn’t have to cover preexisting conditions. Another major alternative is association health plans, which are oriented to small businesses and sole proprietors and do cover preexisting conditions. Neither of the two alternatives appears to have made much difference in the market. Meanwhile, Trump’s administration has been pressing in court for full repeal of the Obama-era law, including provisions that protect people with preexisting conditions from health insurance discrimination.” [Associated Press, 1/13/20

New York Times: To the Contrary, Trump Has Tried to Weaken Protections for Pre-Existing Conditions. “President Trump was not in Washington when the Affordable Care Act passed and established a right to health insurance for Americans with pre-existing health conditions. His first legislative priority as president was a bill that would have repealed key parts of Obamacare and weakened such protections. His Justice Department is arguing in court that the entire law should be overturned.” [New York Times, 1/13/20

Washington Times: Trump Misleads On Obamacare In Attacking Bloomberg. “Mr. Trump said he ‘saved Pre-Existing Conditions in your Healthcare,’ although the protections were written into the law that President Obama muscled to passage in 2010. He’s also rooting for a state-driven legal challenge that could upend those very protections.” [The Washington Times, 1/13/20

Politico Pro: “Trump’s Claim Monday That He ‘Saved Pre-Existing Conditions’ In Americans’ HealthCare Is A False One — The Latest Attempt By The President To Distort His Years-Long Record Of Trying To Strike Down The Affordable Care Act.” “Trump’s claim Monday that he ‘saved Pre-Existing Conditions’ in Americans’ health care is a false one — the latest attempt by the president to distort his years-long record of trying to strike down the Affordable Care Act. Backed by then-President Barack Obama and passed by Democrats in Congress in 2010, the landmark health care law included historic protections for millions of Americans with chronic illness and other health conditions.” [Politico Pro, 1/13/20

MSNBC: “It’s As Brazen A Lie As Trump As Ever Told – And To Know Anything About The President Is To Know The Competition In That Category Is Fierce.” “It’s as brazen a lie as Trump as ever told – and to know anything about the president is to know the competition in that category is fierce. In reality, Trump didn’t “save” protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions; he fought to take those protections away through a series of far-right repeal-and-replace proposals he couldn’t get through a Congress led by his own party. Trump, of course, is also helping champion an ongoing federal lawsuit which would – you guessed it – strip protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions.” [MSNBC, 1/13/20]

Business Insider: Trump Says He ‘Saved’ Protections For Pre-Existing Healthcare Conditions – But He’s Actually Tried Shredding Them For 3 Years. “President Trump sought to place himself as the guardian of a popular part of Obamacare in a series of Monday morning tweets, saying he protected insurance coverage for pre-existing conditions on behalf of millions of Americans. But that doesn’t align with his administration’s record on healthcare.” [Business Insider, 1/13/20

Yahoo News: Trump “Misrepresented His Administration’s Health Care Record” While Touting Court Case That Would Throw Millions Of Americans With Pre-Existing Conditions Off Of Their Insurance.  “Trump’s ‘win in court’ reference is about a lawsuit, backed by the Justice Department, that if successful would result in the overturning of the Affordable Care Act (the ACA, or Obamacare). If that happens, many Americans with preexisting conditions could lose their coverage entirely or face significantly higher premiums, unless and until an alternative is passed. Without protections for preexisting conditions provided by Obamacare, the Kaiser Family Foundation estimated in 2015 that up to 52 million people could be denied coverage. Others would lose insurance if the Medicaid expansion that was adopted by dozens of states and D.C. was killed.”” [Yahoo News, 1/13/20]

Vox: Trump Claiming To Be A Defender Of Preexisting Conditions Is Pretty Shameless. “Trump — who in 2017 pushed health care legislation that would’ve resulted in 23 million Americans losing coverage, and whose administration is currently fighting in federal court to strike down the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including its protections for people with preexisting conditions — nonetheless claimed in a tweet attacking Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg on Monday that ‘I was the person who saved Pre-Existing Conditions in your Healthcare, you have it now’…Trump’s tweet is either a big lie, illustrates his profound confusion about health care policy, or some combination thereof.” [Vox, 1/13/20

Esquire: Trump Debuts a New Claim That Is the Actual Diametric Opposite of Reality.This is just unbelievably brazen lying, even by current Presidential Standards. The Trump administration is right now, this second, backing a lawsuit that would completely dismantle the Affordable Care Act. It would strip the guaranteed protection for preexisting conditions that is one of the law’s primary achievements and leave nothing in its place. This is real life: people will lose their coverage and go bankrupt if the decision goes that way. Funny enough, the people who want the law struck down have made it clear to the court that this can wait until after the 2020 election—when they might face some repercussions for their actions. 68 percent of respondents in a Kaiser Family Foundation poll last year said they wanted to maintain the protections.” [Esquire, 1/13/20]

Mother Jones: Don’t Let Trump Fool You Into Thinking He’s Improving Health Care. “President Donald Trump took to Twitter Monday morning with a brazenly false claim about his health care policy. Let’s break this down. First, Trump was not ‘the person who saved Pre-Existing Conditions in your Healthcare.’ All health plans on the Affordable Care Act marketplace are required by law, as enacted under Barack Obama, to cover treatment for preexisting conditions. A 2019 Kaiser Health News fact check found Trump’s repeated claims to protect patients with preexisting conditions false.” [Mother Jones, 1/13/20]

Fact Checking Trump’s “Brazen” and “Absurd” Lie About “Saving” Protections for Pre-existing Conditions

This morning, President Trump tweeted out an early contender for “Lie of the Year,” claiming that he saved pre-existing conditions protections. In reality, the president and his administration have done everything in their power, both in Congress and the courts, to strip protections from 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions. The president’s claim was quickly debunked by the media, who called out his lie and reminded Americans of the truth about Trump’s disastrous health care agenda. 

Dan Diamond (Politico): “Trump is not ‘the person who saved Pre-Existing Conditions in your Healthcare.’ He is the president who has spent 3 years putting Obamacare’s protections for patients with pre-existing conditions at risk.” [Dan Diamond Twitter, 1/13/20]

Abby Goodnough (New York Times): “There is no possible lens through which this claim about saving pre-existing conditions could be viewed as true.” [Abby Goodnough Twitter, 1/13/20]

Sarah Kliff (New York Times): “The Trump administration is currently asking federal courts to throw out the Affordable Care Act’s protections for pre-existing conditions.” [Sarah Kliff Twitter, 1/13/20]

Margot Sanger-Katz (New York Times): “The president endorsed several bills that would have weakened these protections if they had passed. He had no role in passing Obamacare, which established them. He supports a lawsuit to erase them.” [Margot Sanger-Katz Twitter, 1/13/20]

Alice Miranda Ollstein (Politico): “The Trump administration is arguing in court for the ACA (including protections for preexisting conditions) to be struck down, but they’re asking SCOTUS not to take it up until after the 2020 election.” [Alice Miranda Ollstein Twitter, 1/13/20]

Greg Sargent (Washington Post): “He’s simply incapable of breathing without lying. What transparently stupid gaslighting.” [Greg Sargent Twitter, 1/13/20]

Daniel Dale (CNN): “This is brazen lying. Democrats *got* the protections for people with pre-existing conditions, in Obamacare. Trump has tried to get bills passed that would weaken the protections, is supporting a lawsuit to overturn the whole law, has presented no plan for if the suit succeeds.” [Daniel Dale Twitter, 1/13/20]

Ian Millhiser (Vox): “Have we considered the possibility that Trump knows so little about health policy that he might actually believe that he saved protections for people with preexisting conditions?” [Ian Millhiser Twitter, 1/13/20]

Manu Raju (CNN): “The Affordable Care Act, signed into law by President Obama, guaranteed coverage for people with pre-existing conditions. Trump’s administration backs a lawsuit to invalidate the law, effectively killing the pre-existing conditions provisions in the law.” [Manu Raju Twitter, 1/13/20)

Aaron Rupar (Vox): “The health care bill Trump pushed in 2017 only to be stymied by John McCain would’ve caused 25 million (!) Americans to lose their coverage.” [Aaron Rupar Twitter, 1/13/20]

Sam Stein (The Daily Beast): “Just an absurd lie that takes serious gall to even tell.” [Sam Stein Twitter, 1/13/20]

Trump Tweets Early Contender for Lie of the Year With Outrageous Claim About “Saving” Protections for Pre-existing Conditions

Washington, DC — Today the President of the United States made one of his most outlandish lies, tweeting that he “saved” pre-existing condition protection, when in fact he has done everything possible to strip 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions of their protections. In response to this bald-faced lie, Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse released the following statement: 

“President Trump’s claim about ‘saving’ protections for pre-existing conditions is an early contender for lie of the year. From day one in office, the president has waged an all-out war on health care, and protections for the 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions have been his number one target. If there was any Republican who could have claimed to save Americans’ health care it was Senator John McCain who stopped Trump’s disastrous repeal effort in its tracks. Since then, Trump has taken to court what he could not do in Congress, overturn the health care law and eliminate protection for Americans with pre-existing conditions.” 

Texas Lawsuit Days of Action: Children’s Coverage

Last month, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Trump administration and Republicans in Texas vs. United States, striking down as unconstitutional the ACA’s individual mandate and remanding to the lower court judge a final decision on what parts of the ACA should be eliminated – the very judge who has already ruled the entire law unconstitutional. If President Trump and Republicans have their way, 20 million Americans will lose their insurance coverage, 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will be stripped of their protections, and costs will go up for millions. 

“The Fifth Circuit’s disastrous decision on President Trump’s Texas lawsuit puts the health care of millions of Americans at risk. The court’s decision will impact every corner of the American health care system, threatening health care coverage for children and access to care for seniors, women, individuals with disabilities and LGBTQ Americans in communities across the country,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over these days of action, we will be reminding Americans what’s really at stake if the courts ultimately overturn the health care law.” 

Days of Action: Day 6 of 11 focuses on Children’s Coverage. To learn more about our Days of Action, visit our website.

What’s At Stake: Children’s Coverage

The ACA made significant gains in children’s access to health care. If the health care law is struck down in court:

  • Almost three million children nationwide gained coverage thanks to the ACA.  If the law is overturned, many of these children will lose their insurance.
  • More than 17 million children with pre-existing conditions could face discrimination. Insurance companies could once again exclude benefits, raise premiums, or deny all coverage altogether for children with conditions like asthma and diabetes. 
  • More than 40 million children who have private insurance would lose guaranteed access to free preventive care and could once again face lifetime or annual limits.
  •  2.3 million young adults will no longer be able to stay on their parents’ insurance. 

Medicaid Expansion Helps Children. 

Expanding access to Medicaid for parents has had ripple effects for their children. If the ACA is struck down, this progress could be reversed. 

When Parents Have Medicaid, Their Children Are More Likely To Have Regular Care. As summarized by Georgetown University’s Center on Children and Families, recent research finds that “Parents enrolled in Medicaid have children who are 29 percentage points more likely to receive a well-child visit. The relationship is strongest for families with household incomes between 100% and 200% [of the federal poverty line]. In these families, parents enrolled in Medicaid have children who are 45 percentage points more likely to receive a well-child visit.” [Georgetown University Center for Children and Families, 1/12/18]

Medicaid Expansion Led To Gains In Coverage For Children As Well As Parents. A study in Health Affairs found that “710,000 children gained public coverage when their parents enrolled in Medicaid between 2013 and 2015. If the remaining 19 non-expansion states expanded Medicaid, 200,000 additional children would gain health coverage through existing programs. The effect was largest among children whose parents gained Medicaid eligibility through the expansion.”  [Georgetown University Center for Children and Families, 1/12/18]