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Mitch Harle

April is Medicaid Awareness Month: Bringing Attention to a Critical Health Care Program Under Attack from Trump and Republicans During a National Crisis

April is Medicaid Awareness Month and there has never been a more critical time to highlight Medicaid’s overwhelming importance as the country grapples with a crisis that threatens every Americans’ health and safety. Medicaid is an essential program for more than 70 million Americans currently receiving coverage, including more than 35 million children, and 7.2 million seniors. Despite its successes, Medicaid is continuously under attack from President Trump and Republicans. From proposing massive cuts to Medicaid in his budgets, his Texas lawsuit that would end Medicaid expansion to encouraging states to impose draconian work requirements and block grants that would kick people off the rolls, Trump has been on a warpath to end Medicaid since the day he took office. 

Trump’s attacks on Medicaid are exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis that grips the nation. Taking away health care when Americans are more concerned than ever about their health and safety is not only cruel but will actively hurt our ability to stop the coronavirus as more Americans fall ill and need lifesaving treatment. Throughout April, Protect Our Care will highlight Medicaid’s successes while bringing attention to Trump and Republicans’ years-long quest to end the program and take health care away from Americans when they need it most during this crisis. 

To mark the start of Medicaid Awareness Month today, Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach released the following statement: 

“There has never been a more important time to illustrate just how critical Medicaid is for millions of Americans who rely on it for essential health care and protections than this April as our country stares down the coronavirus crisis. From providing health insurance to children and those with disabilities to coverage for seniors and Americans in rural communities, Medicaid is a lifeline to millions of Americans across the country who would suffer greatly without it. Despite its successes, Medicaid is still under attack from President Trump and Republicans who want to gut the program and end Medicaid expansion at a time when the health and safety of Americans has never been more at risk.”

Medicaid is A Critical Part of America’s Response to the Coronavirus, But President Trump Wants to Gut It 

The Medicaid program is a critical part of our response to coronavirus, but President Trump is waging a war on Medicaid. Here are the ways the Trump administration is trying to gut Medicaid and the ways Medicaid is essential to America’s coronavirus response: 

Trump Administration’s War On Medicaid Threatens The U.S. Coronavirus Response

Trump Wants To Repeal Medicaid Expansion Through His Texas Lawsuit To Overturn The ACA. The Trump administration is currently backing a lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act and, if they are successful, 20 million people would lose insurance and protections for pre-existing conditions would be eliminated overnight. The lawsuit would also terminate Medicaid expansion, threatening to rip away coverage from 17 million and cut key funding for already-struggling rural hospitals during the pandemic.

Trump Continues To Support Medicaid Block Grants. Under the Trump administration’s recently finalized block grant proposal, federal funding would no longer necessarily increase in response to a public health emergency like coronavirus. This could lead to people losing coverage and access to care, undermining prevention and treatment of diseases nationwide. 

Trump Paved The Way For Medicaid Work Requirements. The administration has encouraged states to impose illegal work requirements on Medicaid beneficiaries that are designed to throw people off coverage. When Arkansas imposed the nation’s first work requirement program, 18,000 people lost coverage. The policy has since been struck down by the courts. While the federal government has temporarily halted any state efforts to impose new eligibility requirements that make it more difficult to enroll, including work requirements, states like Oklahoma and Utah are continuing to pursue Medicaid work requirements and other enrollment restrictions.

Trump Wants To Gut The Medicaid Budget. Trump has repeatedly sought deep health care cuts in his budget proposals, most recently seeking more than a trillion in cuts to Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act for 2021. This budget essentially ends Medicaid expansion by eliminating the enhanced federal payment and proposes nationwide work requirements. 

Experts Agree: Attacks On Medicaid Put The Country Even More At Risk During the Coronavirus Crisis 

Sara Rosenbaum, Medicaid Expert At George Washington University, Said Trump Administration’s Anti-Medicaid Ideology “Is Clouding Their Response To A Crisis.” “’Medicaid could be the nation’s biggest public health responder, but it’s such an object of ire in this administration,’ said Sara Rosenbaum, a Medicaid expert at George Washington University. ‘Their ideology is clouding their response to a crisis.’” [Los Angeles Times, 3/13/20]

Joan Alker, Executive Director Of The Center For Children And Families At Georgetown University, Said That “Work Requirements And Premiums Are Precisely The Kinds Of Policies That Are Dangerous Now.” “‘Work requirements and premiums are precisely the kinds of policies that are dangerous now and divert energy for state government staff, who are under enormous stress,’ said Joan Alker, executive director of the Center for Children and Families at Georgetown University. ‘They need to focus on facilitating as many people’s access to care as they can.'” [Modern Healthcare, 3/18/20]

Gregg Bloche, M.D., J.D., Professor Of Law At Georgetown University, Argued Medicaid Expansion Should Be Part Of The Coronavirus Response. “Nationwide Medicaid expansion should be part of our emergency response to coronavirus. Texas, Florida, and 12 other states are putting lives at risk across America by refusing to extend Medicaid coverage to millions who are poor and uninsured. This ensures that many Americans who become infected will go undiagnosed and untreated: people for whom going to the doctor portends financial calamity tend not to do so before their health circumstances become dire.” [The Hill, 3/9/20]

Why Medicaid Is So Important

Medicaid’s Funding Can Increase In Response To A Public Health Emergency Like Coronavirus. “Medicaid fills an essential role as a safety-net insurer because of its special flexible design made possible by its open-ended federal funding base. This sets it apart from all other sources of health insurance and allows the program to fund major, unexpected health care costs other insurance plans are structured to avoid.” [Commonwealth Fund, 3/9/20

Unlike Private Insurance, Medicaid Allows Eligible People To Enroll Whenever They Need Health Care. “Unlike traditional insurance, which depends on specific enrollment periods to avoid adverse selection, people can enroll in Medicaid whenever health care is needed. In addition, Medicaid provides for offsite enrollment at hospitals and clinics, and temporary eligibility (also known as presumptive eligibility) can be granted.” [Commonwealth Fund, 3/9/20

Medicaid Can Provide Retroactive Coverage. “Eligibility can begin three months prior to the date of application, which means that providers will not be penalized financially for furnishing emergency care to Medicaid-eligible patients who have not yet enrolled.” [Commonwealth Fund, 3/9/20

Medicaid’s Flexibility Gives States The Opportunity To Cover More Services When Necessary. “State Medicaid programs can rapidly scale up benefits and adjust normal cost-sharing rules when conditions demand it. This flexibility allows programs to quickly add coverage for new vaccines or begin paying for treatment in nontraditional settings, such as the temporary emergency housing that Washington State is now pursuing for coronavirus patients.” [Commonwealth Fund, 3/9/20

Why Medicaid Expansion Is So Important

More than three million workers have already lost their jobs during the pandemic, so it is especially important for low-income adults to have a place to turn for coverage in this public health emergency. 

Medicaid Expansion Covers More Than 17 Million. Thanks to the ACA, states can get additional federal money to expand Medicaid to vulnerable populations. More than 17 million Americans now have coverage through Medicaid expansion. 

Expansion Provides Key Support For Rural Hospitals. The ACA 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. As hospitals prepare for an influx in patients, it is critical that they are paid for the treatment they provide.

  • Rural Areas Are Vulnerable To Coronavirus Outbreak, Especially In States That Have Not Expanded Medicaid. “‘Vulnerable’ states, where more than 40% of rural hospitals risk closure, include Florida, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee. Alongside Texas, none expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, which would have insured more low-income people. Rural hospitals in non-Medicaid expansion states are treating more people who have no insurance. Therefore, they are providing more care for which they aren’t reimbursed.” [Stateline, 3/17/20]

Donald Trump Cruelly Rejects Special Enrollment Period for the Uninsured to Purchase Coverage During Global Pandemic He Continues to Worsen

Washington, DC — According to reporting from Politico, the Trump administration has refused to reopen the federal ACA marketplace to allow the uninsured to purchase health insurance during the global pandemic, despite calls from health insurers and lawmakers to do so to slow the spread of the virus and save American lives. Numerous states are leading the way by opening their state-run marketplaces in response to the growing threat of the coronavirus. In response to the Trump administration’s shameful decision that puts lives at risk, Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse released the following statement: 

“President Trump is putting American lives at risk by hurting the uninsured at a time when people need health care the most. President Trump’s all-out assault on health care does not only extend to the 20 million Americans he’s trying to rip health care away from with his disastrous lawsuit, but he’s also making it more burdensome for the recently unemployed to enroll through the federal marketplace and barring others from purchasing insurance from the marketplace entirely. This president’s dizzying lack of leadership or regard for the wellbeing of Americans during a time of crisis is shameful, but unsurprising from a president who’s tried to sabotage Americans’ health care since his first day in office and whose lack of concern or preparedness has allowed the virus to spread.”

Sen. Chris Murphy, SEIU President Mary Kay Henry, Protect Our Care, National Security Expert & Health Care Worker to President Trump: Get Our Health Care System What it Needs to Save Lives

Leaders and Experts Demand President Trump Take Action and Highlight His Refusal to Implement the DPA Which Has Crippled Hospitals and Local Governments’ Coronavirus Response Efforts and Put American Lives At Risk

Call Audio Available Here

Washington, DCToday, Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT), SEIU President Mary Kay Henry and Protect Our Care, along with national security expert Katrina Mulligan and a health worker, held a press call to demand President Trump act decisively to get our health care system the equipment it needs to save lives, and highlighted the need to federalize the manufacturing and distribution of the medical supply chain and fully implement the Defense Production Act. 

Last night, President Trump doubled down on his refusal to help get governors and hospitals the ventilators they need. By failing to exercise his authority under the Defense Production Act to accelerate the manufacture and delivery of ventilators and other medical supplies as the country grapples with nationwide shortages, he’s putting the lives of patients and medical professionals at risk. President Trump’s failure to act swiftly or listen to national security experts who warned him about how to prepare for this crisis has cost American’s their lives, and his administration admitted they could have taken action to implement the DPA weeks ago when the current dire situation of mass shortages of medical equipment could have been avoided. 

“Right now, our states and our hospitals are having to bid against each other and chase down leads and pull political strings in order to get equipment,” said Senator Chris Murphy. “The private market is breaking down right now and the president needs to start acting like a president. Tweeting and complaining doesn’t help anybody. We are seeing the consequences of not having enough equipment as the virus continues to spread. What is happening in my home state of Connecticut today is that fewer people will get tested and so fewer people will know that they are positive. They will continue to interact with others in their community and the virus will spread. We can’t beat this virus unless we get serious about fixing the supply chain.” 

“The federal government is responsible for driving a national, coordinated response so that healthcare workers have protective equipment and paid sick leave so our country is prepared to meet the surge of coronavirus cases ahead. This hasn’t happened. Instead, we have a chaotic response from the Trump administration that is immoral and outrageous and is endangering the lives of healthcare heroes on the front lines, their families and communities,” said Mary Kay Henry, President, Service Employees International Union (SEIU). “Through our union, we will continue to fight until every healthcare worker has the equipment and training he or she needs to safely combat the coronavirus, to share resources and equipment with fellow healthcare workers on the frontlines, and to stand with patients and communities and hold the Trump administration accountable for gambling with our lives.”

“It’s really scary to be on the frontlines of fighting COVID-19 and not be protected,” said Bri Bernini, an Emergency Department Tech from Minnesota. “This is a war we are fighting. We should have everything we need to fight it and win. If healthcare workers like me don’t have the equipment we need, we are all going to get sick and we won’t be able to care for patients.”

“President Trump’s lack of preparedness for this crisis continues to put lives at risk,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “Hospitals, medical professionals and patients are in desperate need of lifesaving equipment like masks and ventilators but President Trump refuses to use his power to help them. As Trump continues to spread misinformation and out-right lies about his administration’s efforts, his failure to take action becomes even more apparent as more Americans get sick and governors and medical professionals’ calls for much needed equipment continue to go unanswered.”

“President Trump’s refusal to invoke the Defense Production Act is one of the reasons he’s directly responsible for the health and economic crisis that is spiraling out of control,” said Coronavirus War Room Director Zac Petkanas. “Instead of listening to the experts, Trump spent months downplaying the severity of the crisis and making false statements that confused the public when he could have been preparing for it. The longer we deprive medical professionals of ventilators and the protective gear they need, the more we put their health and safety, and the health and safety of millions of Americans, at imminent risk.”

“American health care workers are on the front lines. If you think about this like a war, they are the ones out there taking personal risk and we aren’t giving them the equipment and protection they need,” said Katrina Mulligan, a National Security Expert and Managing Director at CAP Action. “When we didn’t have enough MRAPs for our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan we surged that equipment to them. We need to do the same thing today. The demand is global, and we need American companies to prioritize selling their goods to American health workers rather than filling orders for foreign countries or selling to the highest bidder.”

BACKGROUND: 

More Than 100 National Security Professionals: “If The Ultimate Objective Is To Save American Lives, There Is No Alternative To Utilizing The Dpa Immediately And To The Fullest Extent.” “The DPA was written into law for a reason, and the equipment and supply shortages we face are just the sort of supply chain shortfalls the law was designed to address. Congress must ensure the full potential of the DPA is being leveraged in the midst of this crisis, and we applaud legislative efforts that require the administration to actually use the tools at its disposal in a serious way. President Trump has said he would utilize the DPA in a ‘worst-case scenario.’ But the scenario we face today is already well beyond any reasonable standard for utilizing the Act. All the President will accomplish with additional delay is to place us farther down that ‘worst-case’ trajectory. If the ultimate objective is to save American lives, there is no alternative to utilizing the DPA immediately and to the fullest extent.” [Open Letter, National Security Professionals, 3/25/20]

Trump Did NOT Do Enough To Get Life Saving Equipment To Hospital and Medical Professionals 

Fact #1: The Trump administration has acknowledged since late February that it could have invoked the Defense Production Act to accelerate the production of medical supplies like masks and ventilators.

  • “Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar told lawmakers this week that the United States needs a stockpile of about 300 million N95 face masks – respiratory protective devices – for medical workers to combat the spread of the virus. The United States currently has only a fraction of that number available for immediate use, Azar testified. During an interagency call on Wednesday, officials from HHS and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) discussed the possibility of invoking the Defense Production Act for the manufacture of “personal protective equipment” that can be worn to prevent infection, according to a DHS official. Such equipment can include masks, gloves and body suits.” [Reuters, 2/27/20]

Fact #2: Donald Trump waited until doctors already faced life-threatening shortages of medical supplies to even consider using the Defense Production Act.

  • “Last Wednesday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order invoking the Defense Production Act (DPA). That provision requires private companies to prioritize any federal government orders for products — including masks, respirators, and other critical items needed to fight coronavirus — over other orders. But as of Monday — five days later — even top Trump administration officials admit the government has yet to make a single order. Health care workers across the country are desperate for masks, gowns, respirators, and other basic supplies they need to treat patients with Covid-19 and to keep themselves protected from the coronavirus. They’re pleading for him to use the DPA.” [Vox, 3/23/20]
  • “‘It’s like going to war with a butter knife.’ That’s the description one physician in New York City offered for how he and his colleagues are trying to suppress the coronavirus, even as they deal with dwindling stocks of health-care supplies and personal protective equipment. ‘This is a disaster. [Our health-care workers] are risking their lives,’ the physician told me. ‘We need to advocate for our frontline workers.’” [The Atlantic, 3/20/20]

Fact #3: Donald Trump falsely claimed that governors were supposed to be independently ordering medical supplies without the federal government’s coordination, leaving states to compete with each other for necessary supplies.

  • Asked about his rationale for not invoking the Defense Production Act, Trump said: “First of all, governors are supposed to be doing a lot of this work, and they are doing a lot of this work. The federal government is not supposed to be out there buying vast amounts of items and then shipping. You know, we’re not a shipping clerk. The governors are supposed to be — as with testing, the governors are supposed — are supposed to be doing it.” [Press Conference, Washington, DC, 3/19/20]
  • “‘It’s a wild, wild West out there, and indeed [we’re] overpaying for PPE because of that competition,’ Pritzker said on CNN’s ‘State of the Union,’ in reference to the personal protection equipment needed for healthcare workers to treat COVID-19 patients. Pritzker said Illinois received a fraction of the hospital supplies it requested from the federal government, forcing him to compete on the open market with governors in other states impacted by the virus, including California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), as those supplies become depleted. Pritzker said instead of a competition, this “should have been a coordinated effort by the federal government,” adding that President Trump has to push for the manufacturing of necessary equipment.” [The Hill, 3/22/20]

Republicans Block Efforts to Protect Americans with Pre-existing Conditions in Latest Coronavirus Bill

Washington, DC — Today, Congress is closing in on reaching a deal on a coronavirus relief package to address the crisis while President Trump continues to mishandle the response. The proposal, strengthened dramatically by the efforts of Senate and House Democrats, currently includes several vital measures to help the country. However, due to Republican opposition, it fails to include key elements essential to providing health care during this crisis, including Democratic proposals to stop Trump’s Texas lawsuit, stop Trump’s junk insurance plans, and allow the uninsured to purchase health coverage on the federal ACA exchange. Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach released the following statement in response:

“No one should have to worry about the status or quality of their health care, particularly during this emergency. If Republicans were truly serious about protecting Americans during this crisis, they would agree to ban junk insurance plans that don’t fully protect people with pre-existing conditions who need treatment for the coronavirus, and they would tell the president to drop the Texas lawsuit that would rip 20 million Americans off their health care. Instead, Republicans insist on supporting President Trump’s policies that are rejected by the majority of the American people ”

BACKGROUND:

Trump Is Pushing Short-Term Junk Plans That Would Not Need To Cover Coronavirus Treatment. Junk plans do not need to comply with the consumer protections established by the Affordable Care Act, including coverage of essential health benefits. The expansion of junk plans under Trump has already led to reports of patients receiving thousands of dollars in unexpected medical bills: In February, a Florida man covered by Trump-backed short-term plan discovered he “may owe thousands” after he sought a test for coronavirus.

Trump Is Backing A Lawsuit That Could Rip Away Coverage From 20 Million People In The Middle Of The Outbreak. The Trump administration is currently backing a lawsuit that would overturn the Affordable Care Act and, if they are successful, 20 million people would lose insurance overnight. The lawsuit also threatens protections for 135 million with pre-existing conditions. This means that anyone who contracts coronavirus – a potential pre-existing condition – could be charged more or denied coverage altogether by insurance companies.

ACA at 10 Days of Action: Medicaid Expansion

Surrounding the 10th anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on March 23, Protect Our Care is holding 10 days of action to raise awareness of the most critical components of the law which has improved the lives of millions of Americans. Working with partner organizations and health care advocates, Protect Our Care will highlight a different aspect of the law each day while making clear what’s at stake if the Trump administration is successful in overturning the law through the courts.  

“The Affordable Care Act has been an incredibly positive force for Americans over the last 10 years, especially for 17 million people who are healthier due to Medicaid expansion,said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these 10 days of action, Protect Our Care will remind Americans how the ACA has improved the lives of millions while making clear that President Trump and Republicans’ lawsuit to overturn the law poses an existential threat to Americans’ health care.” 

Days of Action: Day 10 of 10 focuses on Medicaid Expansion. To learn more about our days of action, visit our website.

Research Confirms Medicaid Expansion Has Had Far-Reaching Benefits, Resulting In Better Health Outcomes, Access To Care, And Financial Security For Patients. 

Medicaid Saved At Least 19,200 Lives. A report by the Center On Budget And Policy Priorities found that “the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) expansion of Medicaid to low-income adults is preventing thousands of premature deaths each year, a landmark study finds. It saved the lives of at least 19,200 adults aged 55 to 64 over the four-year period from 2014 to 2017. Conversely, 15,600 older adults died prematurely because of state decisions not to expand Medicaid.”  [Center On Budget And Policy Priorities, 11/6/19

Medicaid Expansion Led To Coverage Gains For Children. 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]

The Chance Of Accruing Medical Debt Is 20 Percent Lower In States That Have Expanded Medicaid. “A survey comparing expansion and non-expansion states finds that the chance of accruing medical debt is 20 percent lower in expansion states. It also finds that Medicaid coverage, by reducing enrollees’ unpaid medical bills, improves their credit, leading to lower-interest mortgage, auto, and credit card loans that save them an estimated $280 per year in interest.” [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 10/2/18]

Additionally, Medicaid Expansion Has: 

If The Affordable Care Act Is Struck Down, Medicaid Expansion Would Be Eliminated

Despite the increasing disparities between states that chose to expand Medicaid and those that did not, the Trump administration and its Republican allies remain intent on decimating Medicaid expansion and jeopardizing the health of 17 million Americans who depend on Medicaid expansion for coverage. 

  • Seventeen Million People Enrolled Through Medicaid Expansion Could Lose Coverage. 
  • Access To Opioid Treatment Would Be In Jeopardy For 800,000 People With Opioid Use Disorder. Roughly four in ten, or 800,000 people with an opioid use disorder are enrolled in Medicaid. Many became eligible through Medicaid expansion.
  • Key Support For Rural Hospitals Would Disappear, leaving hospitals with $9.6 billion more in uncompensated care.
  • 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 $135 billion, or 34.6 percent in the first year.

 

Democrats Mark ACA’s 10-Year Anniversary and Highlight the Ongoing Threats to the Law in Midst of the Coronavirus Crisis

Yesterday, Democrats in both chambers reflected on the 10-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act. Members stressed the overwhelming benefits of the ACA including quality affordable coverage for 20 million American and protections for 135 million with pre-existing conditions among many other provisions and protections. And many Democrats, especially those who ran and won on health care in 2018, were quick to highlight the existential threats to the ACA from the Trump administration and Republicans’ court case to overturn the law at a time when the country is in the midst of the coronavirus crisis and Americans are more concerned than ever about their health care. 

Speaker Nancy Pelosi Said “Thank God For The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act.” “‘We couldn’t need it more in terms of this pandemic,’ House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said on a call yesterday hosted by the Democrat-connected group Protect Our Care. ‘As we prayerfully go into this further discussion on the coronavirus challenge, thank God for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.’” [Washington Post, 3/24/20

Speaker Nancy Pelosi: 10 years ago, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, because we believe health care must be a right, not a privilege. Today, Americans know their coverage is protected thanks to the ACA – coverage they need now more than ever. #ProtectOurCare

Majority Leader Steny Hoyer: Democrats were proud to pass the #ACA 10 years ago, and thanks to the expansion of Medicaid, 17 million Americans gained coverage. It’s deeply concerning the Trump Administration continues to seek to undermine this program, but Democrats will continue to #ProtectOurCare.

Majority Whip James E. Clyburn: Today is the 10th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act. Without the ACA, millions of Americans will lose their health care coverage, & protections for people with pre-existing conditions will disappear. Now, more than ever, Americans need access to affordable health care.

Ways & Means Chairman Richard Neal: On #ACA10, let us remember the #ACA protects pre-existing conditions for 975,000 MA residents, has reduced premiums by 11% for MA residents for those receiving premium tax credits, and has reduced the uninsured population by 96,810 people in our state.

Energy & Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone: 10 years ago today, the #ACA was signed into law. I am honored to have helped draft this landmark legislation. The #COVID19 pandemic has been a sobering reminder of the importance of access to quality, affordable health care for all Americans.

Education & Labor Chairman Bobby Scott: Today is the 10th anniversary of the ACA. The Trump Administration must end its lawsuit, which would strike down the law as well as pre-existing condition protections for 130 million Americans, especially amid the #COVID19 pandemic. #ProtectOurCare #ACA10

Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Ranking Member Patty Murray: The Affordable Care Act expanded access to affordable, quality health care for millions of patients. But since day one in office, President Trump & the GOP have worked to undermine the protections people rely on most. For #ACA10, here 10 of their health care attacks.

Finance Ranking Member Ron Wyden: Ten years ago today the Affordable Care Act became law. Since then, we’ve seen countless reminders about why it’s so important that every American has access to quality, affordable care. Few of these reminders has come as swiftly as the #COVID19 outbreak.

Senator Bob Casey: THREAD: Over the past 10 years, the #AffordableCareAct has helped millions of working families, seniors and people with disabilities. Yet the Trump Admin is trying to sabotage the #ACA – in the middle of a pandemic. Here’s what’s at stake if Republicans refuse to #DropTheLawsuit:

Senator Debbie Stabenow: The Affordable Care Act has helped millions of people in Michigan since President Obama signed it 10 years ago today. #ACA10

Senator Mark Warner: Today marks the ten-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act. I don’t even want to think about the problems we’d be having right now if the ACA hadn’t provided coverage and protections for pre-existing conditions to millions of Americans.

Rep. Colin Allred: As the nation grapples with the spread of #COVID19, protecting the Affordable Care Act is more important than ever. Since my first day in Congress, I’ve been working hard to defend the #ACA and its critical protections, like those for folks with pre-existing conditions. #ACA10

Rep. Angie Craig: Despite massive layoffs and a global pandemic, the Administration is continuing their lawsuit that threatens millions of Americans’ health coverage. Today is the 10th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, and I am once again urging the administration to #ProtectOurCare.

Rep. Sharice Davids: 20+ million Americans have gained health coverage since the Affordable Care Act became law ten years ago. Now more than ever, we must not turn our back on them. #ProtectOurCare

Rep. Abby Finkenauer: It’s the 10th anniversary of the passage of the #ACA, and it is more important than ever that we expand and protect it. The GOP is STILL suing to overturn the ACA, and if they win, the uninsured rate in Iowa will double. That’s unacceptable. #IA01

Rep. Lizzie Fletcher: Today marks 10 years since the #AffordableCareAct became law. 60,000 people in #TX07 get their insurance through the marketplace, including those with pre-existing conditions. #COVID19 underscores the role that health care plays in our lives, & I’ll continue to #ProtectOurCare.

Rep. Susie Lee: Since becoming law in 2010, the #AffordableCareAct has improved health care for millions of Americans. As our nation faces an unprecedented public health crisis, it’s more important than ever to protect our health care, especially for Americans w/pre-existing conditions. #ACA10

Rep. Lucy McBath: Ten years ago, the #AffordableCareAct became law. It now covers over 20 million Americans & protects more than 133 million people living with pre-existing conditions. Now more than ever, we must protect & expand access to affordable, quality health care. #ForThePeople

Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell: Today, on the 10th anniversary of Affordable Care Act, in the midst of #COVID19 pandemic, I’m calling on President Trump to drop his lawsuit that would destroy this law. The #ACA is helping us to combat the spread of the #coronavirus by ensuring tests & treatments are covered.

Rep. Chris Pappas: In these unprecedented times, the Affordable Care Act – signed into law 10 years ago today – is needed more than ever. I called on @SecAzar to establish a Special Enrollment Period for patients to get ACA marketplace coverage during this pandemic #ACA10

Rep. Haley Stevens: Quality, affordable health care is a right. 10 years after its passage, the #AffordableCareAct expanded coverage to over 20M more Americans and protects over 133M Americans with pre-existing conditions. I have and always will fight to #ProtectOurCare. Full stop. #ForThePeople

Rep. Xochitl Torres Small: 10 years ago, the #AffordableCareAct became law. The challenges our community face today with the current public health emergency underly the importance of access for all New Mexicans. 

Rep. Lauren Underwood: 10 years ago, the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, expanding health care coverage to over 20 million Americans & protecting people living with preexisting conditions. More than ever, it’s critical that we all work to expand access to quality, affordable health care.#ACA10

Coverage of the ACA’s 10-Year Anniversary: 

The Root: The Affordable Care Act Turns 10 Today. We Cannot Turn Back The Clock On Black Women’s Reproductive Health And Rights. “Since the ACA was enacted, the proportion of black women of reproductive age without health insurance fell by 36 percent, and 30 percent of black women who were previously uninsured are now enrolled in Medicaid. The ACA’s policies meant more women of all races had insurance, and more of their health needs were covered than ever before. Sexual and reproductive health care for people of all genders improved under the ACA, and women’s lives are better for it. As of 2015, at least 15 million black women gained access to guaranteed no-cost birth control. And for women having children, the ACA was a significant improvement. Maternity care must be covered as an essential health benefit by individual market health plans. Prior to 2013, just 12 percent of plans on the individual market included maternity benefits. The infant and maternal mortality rates declined in states that expanded Medicaid under the ACA, especially among black babies and women.” [The Root, 3/23/20

Rep. Jan Schakowsky In The Hill: America’s Small Businesses Are Thriving, Thanks To The Affordable Care Act. “Hundreds of thousands of businesses have benefited from the ACA, and their successes are felt nationwide. With each growing small business, communities are strengthened, jobs are created, and America’s competitive advantage is reinforced. On this milestone anniversary, we have so much to celebrate. The ACA is at its highest approval rating since passage, with a majority of the American public in support. But if we are not vigilant, the Trump administration will undo this progress as they push their agenda to sabotage the ACA.” [The Hill, 3/23/20

Rep. Dina Titus in the Las Vegas Sun: “Now Is The Time To Strengthen And Fight For The Affordable Care Act” “Now more than ever, Nevadans are relying on the access to quality, affordable health care provided by the Affordable Care Act. The Trump administration’s obsession with sabotaging this landmark achievement — particularly as our nation grapples with the deadly coronavirus outbreak — is irresponsible and cruel. The Affordable Care Act has drastically improved the U.S. health care system over the past 10 years. At this critical time for so many patients, Trump should stop trying to destroy it.” [Las Vegas Sun, 3/23/20]

Laura Packard In USA Today: “Ten Years After The ACA Was Born, On March 23, 2010, We Need Leaders Who Will Fight To Protect Our Care.” “Republicans including my senator, Cory Gardner, voted again and again for repeal without any protections for the most vulnerable and installed activist Supreme Court justices determined to strip our care. They could be working on making health care more affordable and accessible to all, and lowering the cost of prescription drugs. Instead they focus on pushing junk insurance plans, ratcheting up work requirements to strip health care away from low income people, and dismantling the protections of the ACA for all. In this moment, we can see that our health care system was last on their priority list. Now, in the time of coronavirus, it’s more clear than ever that when a health care system does not work for some of us, it fails us all. Ten years after the ACA was born, on March 23, 2010, we need leaders who will fight to protect our care. Some of us will not survive without it.” [USA Today, 3/22/20

Politico: “Obamacare Is Still Very Much With Us, And In Many Respects Its Stronger Than It’s Ever Been.” “Obamacare is still very much with us, and in many respects is stronger than it’s ever been — unless the latest lawsuit kills it…Despite turbulence around the law — the repeal efforts, the court challenges, the early HealthCare.gov struggles — the marketplaces seem to have stabilized. That’s largely thanks to its generous insurance subsidies, which have created a reliable base of customers shield from high premiums.” [Politico, 3/22/20

Andy Slavitt In USA Today: Affordable Care Act At 10: Amid Coronavirus, Never More Popular, Threatened Or Necessary. “The Republican plan to repeal the ACA without a replacement has been exposed for its absurdity. Imagine 21 million people losing coverage now. Health coverage wouldn’t have prevented the spread of the virus, but with 20-60% of Americans who could potentially get COVID-19, guaranteeing affordable coverage for people with preexisting conditions and other ACA protections are looking like just the basics we need to dig out of this.” [USA Today, 3/23/20

New York Times: The ACA “Greatly Expanded Coverage.” “When it was passed, nearly a quarter of Americans (22.3 percent) between 18 and 64 were uninsured. By 2016 — just two years after the law’s insurance marketplaces opened and states were allowed to expand Medicaid to more low-income people — that rate had plunged to 12.4 percent. In all, about 20 million more people have coverage now than before the law.” [New York Times, 3/23/20

  • New York Times: The Results Of Medicaid Expansion Have Been “Significant.” “Still, all but 14 states have now expanded the program, and the results have been significant: Medicaid enrollment increased by about 13 million, or 34 percent, in the so-called expansion states between 2013 and 2019, according to federal data. The uninsured rate for poor adult citizens with no dependent children — a group that had often been ineligible for Medicaid — plummeted, dropping to 16.5 percent in 2015 from 45.4 percent in 2013, according to the Urban Institute.” [New York Times, 3/23/20
  • New York Times: “As The Coronavirus Sweeps Through The Country, Many State Officials Are Relying On The Affordable Care Act To Provide Health Coverage For Residents Who Have None.” “Now, as the coronavirus sweeps through the country, many state officials are relying on the Affordable Care Act to provide health coverage for residents who have none. On Friday, California became one of the latest states to set up a special enrollment period so people can sign up for insurance on their state-run marketplaces, and the Trump administration is considering reopening enrollment in the larger federal marketplace, which serves most states, for a limited period.” [New York Times, 3/23/20
  • New York Times: “The Law Has Also Played An Important Role In Keeping Care Affordable For The 160 Million Americans Who Get Coverage From An Employer.” “The law has also played an important role in keeping care affordable for the 160 million Americans who get coverage from an employer, including by requiring those plans to cover the children of beneficiaries until age 26. Before the law, employer-provided plans often set strict limits on what they would pay toward medical bills during a single year and over a lifetime. An estimated 105 million Americans had some sort of lifetime cap before the passage of the health care law. The A.C.A. outlawed those limits.” [New York Times, 3/23/20

SHOT/CHASER: States Open ACA Enrollment for Uninsured Americans as Trump Doubles Down on Desire to “Terminate” the Law in Midst of Crisis

SHOT: “The Rush By Numerous Obamacare-Friendly States To Reopen Enrollment In The Past Week Week Demonstrated The Law’s Potential As A Safety Net In A Time Of A Major Health Crisis.” [Politico, 3/23/20

CHASER: Trump Doubles Down on Commitment to “Terminate” the Law and Strip Health Care from 20 Million Americans Amidst Coronavirus Crisis: “Trump reaffirms that his administration will go forward with lawsuit to end the Affordable Care Act: ‘what we want to do is terminate it’ and replace it with something better.” [Sam Stein Twitter, 3/22/20

ACA at 10 Days of Action: Affordable Coverage

Surrounding the 10th anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on March 23, Protect Our Care is holding 10 days of action to raise awareness of the most critical components of the law which has improved the lives of millions of Americans. Working with partner organizations and health care advocates, Protect Our Care will highlight a different aspect of the law each day while making clear what’s at stake if the Trump administration is successful in overturning the law through the courts.  

“The Affordable Care Act has been an incredibly positive force for Americans over the last 10 years, particularly in improving access to care and financial stability,said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Over the course of these 10 days of action, Protect Our Care will remind Americans how the ACA has improved the lives of millions while making clear that President Trump and Republicans’ lawsuit to overturn the law poses an existential threat to Americans’ health care.” 

Days of Action: Day 9 of 10 focuses on Affordable Coverage. To learn more about our days of action, visit our website.

The ACA Included Key Affordability Measures: 

  • Insurers can no longer charge more because of a pre-existing condition. Because of the ACA, insurers in the individual market can no longer drop or deny coverage, or charge you more because of a pre-existing condition. More than 135 million Americans have a pre-existing health condition. Additionally, insurers can no longer put annual or lifetime limits on the care you receive.
  • About 9 million Americans receive tax credits to help them afford coverage. Because of the ACA, most people getting coverage on the marketplace qualify for tax credits to help pay for coverage. 8.9 million of the ACA’s 11.4 million marketplace enrollees receive premium tax credits.
  • Seniors save more on prescription drugs. Because of the ACA, the Medicare prescription drug donut hole is closed. 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.
  • Women can no longer 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. Before the ACA, 1 in 5 women reported postponing or going without preventive care due to cost.
  • Most privately-insured Americans receive free preventive care. Because of the ACA, health plans must cover preventive services — like flu shots, cancer screenings, contraception, and mammograms – at no cost to consumers. This includes nearly 137 million Americans, most of whom have employer coverage.
  • More than 60 million people have 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. 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.

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

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.

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

Protect Our Care Marks 10-Year Anniversary of the Affordable Care Act with Nationwide Action

Protect Our Care marked the 10-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act with a groundswell of activity including press calls and op-eds across the country highlighting the importance of the law on this landmark anniversary. In addition to holding a national press call today with Speaker Pelosi today, Protect Our Care was joined by elected officials and health care advocates across nine states for press calls to bring attention to the overwhelming benefits of the Affordable Care Act over the past 10 years and to highlight ongoing threats to the ACA including the lawsuit from Trump and Republicans to overturn the law in the midst of the coronavirus crisis. 

PRESS CALLS HAPPENING TODAY:

NATIONAL

Monday, March 23rd – ACA Anniversary Press Call With Speaker Pelosi
On the 10-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Rep. Lauren Underwood (IL-14), former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Laura Packard, a stage four cancer survivor, along with Protect Our Care held a press call to highlight the passage of the landmark law and show what’s at stake for Americans if President Trump and Republicans overturn the ACA as the nation grapples with the coronavirus. Listen to the call here

National op-ed:
USA Today // Laura Packard // Opinion: I’d be bankrupt or dead without the Affordable Care Act. We’re both survivors — so far.

IN THE STATES

IOWA

Monday, March 23rd – Iowa ACA Anniversary Press Call
Iowans, advocates, and local elected officials from across the state will join Protect Our Care, Progress Iowa, Iowa Citizen Action Network, and Iowa Voices for a press call to mark the ten-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at a time when the threat of the coronavirus reminds us all of the importance of everyone having access to quality and affordable health coverage.

Iowa op-eds:
Des Moines Register // State Rep. Jennifer Konfrst // Affordable Care Act, now 10 years old, is more important than ever because of coronavirus

MAINE

Monday, March 23 – Press Call with Maine Leaders and Advocates
State Senate President Troy Jackson will join Protect Our Care for a press call to mark the ten-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at a time when the threat of the coronavirus reminds us all of the importance of everyone having access to quality and affordable health coverage.

NORTH CAROLINA

Monday, March 23 – ACA Anniversary Press Call with Reps. Butterfield and Price
On Monday, March 23rd at 7:00pm, Rep. David Price and Rep. G.K. Butterfield will join Protect Our Care, Action NC, Mom’s Rising, and Little Lobbyists for a call to mark the ten-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at a time when the threat of the coronavirus reminds us all of the importance of everyone having access to quality and affordable health coverage.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Monday, March 23 – ACA Anniversary Press Call
Covering New Hampshire and Protect Our Care NH will offer a press call to mark the ten-year anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at a time when the threat of the coronavirus reminds us all of the importance of everyone having access to quality and affordable health coverage.

Coverage:
New Hampshire Union Leader // Advocates celebrate 10 years of Obamacare, seek special enrollment to deal with COVID-19

New Hampshire op-eds:
The Conway Daily Sun // Jayme Henriques Simoes // Saving ACA more critical with new virus
Concord Monitor // Jayme Henriques Simoes // My Turn: Especially now, Granite Staters rely on the ACA 

MINNESOTA

Monday, March 23 – ACA Anniversary Press Call with Attorney General Ellison
Protect Our Care Minnesota was joined by Attorney General Keith Ellison, Assistant Senate DFL Leader Jeff Hayden, DFL-Minneapolis, State Rep. Kelly Morrison, M.D., DFL-Deephaven, and community advocate Jessica Intermill to mark the passage of the Affordable Care Act 10 years ago, discuss how the law improved access to health care for Minnesotans, and talk about the role the ACA plays in ongoing coronavirus response efforts despite continued efforts to eliminate the law. Listen to the call here

NEVADA

Monday, March 23 – Nevada ACA Anniversary Press Call
Today, Protect Our Care Nevada was joined by State Sen. Yvanna Cancela, State Assemblyman Edgar Flores, insurance broker Alberto Ochoa, and cancer survivor Joe Merlino to mark the passage of the Affordable Care Act 10 years ago, discuss how the law improved access to health care for Nevadans, and talk about the role the ACA plays in ongoing coronavirus response efforts despite Republicans’ continued efforts to eliminate the law. Listen to the call here

Nevada op-eds:
Las Vegas Sun // Rep. Dina Titus // Now is the time to strengthen and fight for the Affordable Care Act

ARIZONA

Monday, March 23 – Arizona ACA Anniversary Press Call
Today, Protect Our Care Arizona was joined by Representative Kelli Butler and State Senator Tony Navarrette to mark the passage of the Affordable Care Act 10 years ago, discuss how the law improved access to health care for Arizonans, and talk about the role the ACA plays in ongoing coronavirus response efforts despite Republicans’ continued efforts to eliminate the law. Listen to the call here.

WISCONSIN

Wisconsin op-ed:
Up North News // Leslie Dach // Opinion: Protect Our Care From Ongoing Republican Attacks

PRESS CALLS LAST WEEK:

GEORGIA

Friday, March 20 – Georgia ACA Anniversary Press Call
On Friday, March 20, Protect Our Care Georgia joined Georgians for a Healthy Future to discuss the importance of the Affordable Care Act for Georgians, especially amid the current global pandemic. Speakers included State Rep. Kim Schofield, Dr. Michelle Au, Dr. Jamie Weisman, and Cindy Pursley, a cancer survivor who relies on the ACA for care. They called on Governor Kemp to expand Medicaid and on Attorney General Chris Carr to remove Georgia from the Texas vs. United States lawsuit. Listen to the call audio here.

COLORADO

Thursday, March 19 – Colorado ACA Anniversary Press Call
Protect Our Care Colorado and Rocky Mountain Values hosted a press call joined by Rep. Dr. Yadira Caraveo, Sheena Kadi of One Colorado, Adam Fox of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative (CCHI), and activist Laura Packard to mark the passage of the Affordable Care Act 10 years ago, discuss how the law improved access to health care for Coloradans, and talk about the role the ACA plays in ongoing coronavirus response efforts despite Republicans’ continued efforts to eliminate the law. Listen to the call here

Colorado op-eds:
West Word // Gale Devore // Op-Ed: Colorado Banned High-Priced Insulin, Now Congress Needs to Act
Colorado Sun // Laura Packard and Dafna Michaelson Jenet // Opinion: The ACA changed how we treat cancer — and it is all at risk because of our current leadership

Speaker Pelosi, Senator Casey, Rep. Underwood, Former HHS Secretary Sebelius and Protect Our Care Mark 10-Year Anniversary of the ACA Amidst Coronavirus Crisis

Speaker Pelosi Joined Protect Our Care on a Press Call to Highlight Landmark Anniversary of the ACA and Discuss the Ongoing Threats to the Law That Put Americans at Risk During the Coronavirus Pandemic 

Call Audio Available Here

Washington, DC — On the 10-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Rep. Lauren Underwood (IL-14), former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Laura Packard, a stage four cancer survivor, along with Protect Our Care held a press call to highlight the passage of the landmark law and show what’s at stake for Americans if President Trump and Republicans overturn the ACA as the nation grapples with the coronavirus. 

On the call, Speaker Pelosi reflected on the progress made since the passage of the ACA and made clear the importance of strengthening and protecting the law. Just this month, the Supreme Court announced it would hear the Trump-Republican lawsuit to repeal the ACA in its upcoming term, which if successful would strip coverage from 20 million Americans and eliminate protections for 135 million with pre-existing conditions. This means that during a time when Americans face unprecedented threats to their health as a result of President Trump’s failure to prepare America for the coronavirus, Republicans are still dead set on ripping away their health care.

“Ten years ago we passed this law and took a monumental step forward for the health care and financial safety of the American people,” said Speaker Pelosi. “House Democrats have been leading the way to defend and enhance the law. Instead of joining us to strengthen the law, the Trump Administration is in court again to tear it down entirely and we cannot let that happen. This is both a happy day for what we did then and it’s a challenging day for what the Trump Administration is still doing to dismantle the law at a time when we couldn’t need it more. Today I am urging President Trump withdraw from the lawsuit in the Supreme Court that, if successful, would return to lifetime limits on coverage, remove essential health benefits, open up the prescription drug donut hole, take young people off their parents insurance, and allow Americans with pre-existing conditions to be discriminated against in terms of health care and costs.”

“Ten years ago we made affordable health care a reality by expanding coverage to millions of Americans who were uninsured and protecting people with pre-existing conditions. This is an historic achievement worthy of commemoration,” said Senator Bob Casey. “However, our work does not stop there. For the past 10 years, Congressional Republicans have continued their efforts to dismantle consumer protections for people with pre-existing conditions, destroy the ACA through the courts and defund the law by making it harder for Americans to sign up for health care plans. These efforts are even more obscene when we are in the midst of a global public health pandemic. The best way to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the ACA would be for Republicans to announce that they are dropping their lawsuit. I will not stop fighting to protect the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.”

“Ten years ago we took an enormous step to improve the lives of the American people and progress our country’s health care system. Because of the Affordable Care Act, more than 20 million more Americans have access to quality, affordable coverage, millions of people like me with a preexisting condition don’t have to live in fear, young people can stay on their parents’ health insurance, Medicaid has been expanded, and preventative services are available without out-of-pocket costs,” said Congresswoman Lauren Underwood. “As we take a moment to celebrate this momentous anniversary today, let us only allow it to be a moment. The work of ten years ago continues today and is more important than ever as Republicans and now this Administration have worked themselves breathless trying to take healthcare away from millions of Americans in Congress and in the courts. We need to work together to lower health care and prescription drug costs, expand access to mental health services, and improve the quality of health care. At this very moment we are experiencing a global pandemic that serves as a stark reminder of the value of our personal health, our family’s health, and the health of our communities.”

“We’re celebrating the 10th anniversary of the ACA but the fight to save the law began the day the bill was signed and continues to this day with the Texas lawsuit that could strike down all of the benefits that people have received over the last 10 years,” said former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “Here in the midst of the coronavirus, health care again is front and center in people’s minds and we need to remind people that this administration is trying to take health care away from Americans.”

“Ten years after the ACA was signed into law, the fate of 135 million people with pre-existing conditions hangs in the balance – many of us uninsurable without it, and many will not survive without insurance,” said Laura Packard, stage four cancer survivor and health care advocate. “Millions more Americans will join the ranks of people with pre-existing conditions too, if they develop long term damage from coronavirus. And many millions more have lost health insurance when they lost their jobs in the last few days.”

“Because of the Affordable Care Act 20 million Americans have access to quality, affordable health care and 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions have the protections they need,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “Now more than ever, we must all work to protect our health care against President Trump’s and the Republican’s ongoing attacks. Despite the progress made under the law, President Trump and Republicans remain dead set on ripping it apart and stripping millions of their health coverage, even as we confront the threat of coronavirus made worse by the Trump administration’s disastrous response. President Trump must immediately drop his Texas lawsuit.”