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Medicaid Coverage Is Essential

Millions Are At Risk Of Losing Medicaid Coverage When The COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Ends

As part of week three of Medicaid Awareness Month, Protect Our Care is examining the consequences of ending the COVID-19 public health emergency, which could result in millions of people losing Medicaid coverage if states fail to act. Today, more than one in four Americans have health coverage through Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), making these programs undeniable pillars of the American health care system. During the COVID-19 pandemic, President Biden and Democrats in Congress have made historic investments to secure and expand Medicaid during a time of grave public health risks, sudden job loss, and economic upheaval. Thanks to their continued commitment to protecting health coverage access, 2022 saw more than 85 million Americans receiving their coverage through Medicaid or CHIP. 

As America seeks a return to normal, it’s likely the public health emergency will end this summer. When that happens, for the first time in more than two years, all states will need to redetermine the eligibility for most people with Medicaid. This process — called the “PHE unwinding” — could result in more than 16 million people losing their Medicaid coverage, including more than six million children. It is imperative that Americans who continue to qualify for Medicaid coverage are not kicked off due to administrative hurdles and Americans who are no longer eligible are connected with affordable, quality coverage — not left to fall through the cracks. Far too many states who have been historically hostile to Medicaid care more about saving money than they care about peoples’ lives. Medicaid terminations prior to the COVID-19 pandemic have shown several states hostile to Medicaid have previously removed hundreds of thousands of Medicaid recipients due to administrative barriers and temporary income increases. It is essential that history not repeat itself, with the health of millions at risk.

President Biden has already taken the bold step of establishing an open enrollment period (OEP) for individuals with incomes below 150 percent of the federal poverty level that will continue until the end of 2022. This will ease the transition for Americans who are no longer eligible for Medicaid and ensure they have access to the coverage they need. States must also do everything within their power to protect the coverage of their residents, and respond to the worries and concerns of families. It is essential states follow the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ guidance to promote continuous coverage, and have a clear and proactive plan to implement every tool at their disposal, in order to protect millions of vulnerable Americans from losing their care.

Medicaid Landscape

Over 85 Million Americans Rely On Medicaid & CHIP. Nearly 15 million Americans were able to enroll in Medicaid during the COVID-19 pandemic, bringing the total of individuals covered by Medicaid and CHIP to more than 85 million, or one in four Americans. The pandemic has revealed the essential nature of the Medicaid program during America’s worst public health emergency. Since February 2020, there has been a 21 percent total increase in Medicaid and CHIP enrollment. 

How The Pandemic Transformed Medicaid

Medicaid Served As A Lifeline During The Pandemic. Millions of Americans lost their jobs, and subsequently, their health coverage during the pandemic. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) requires states to provide enrollees with continuous Medicaid coverage until the federal public health emergency (PHE) ends. The federal government provided additional funding to states during this period to support the increase of enrollees, which surged by 14.8 million over the course of the pandemic. Additionally, states streamlined their enrollment processes, allowing individuals to access their coverage as quickly as possible. 

What’s At Stake When The Public Health Emergency Ends

Millions May Lose Coverage. In the 20 states able to report on potential Medicaid disenrollment, it is estimated that 13 percent of Medicaid recipients will be disenrolled at the end of the PHE. The majority of states report that a change in income will be the overwhelming reason people lose Medicaid coverage. However, many states have also indicated that missing documentation, incomplete renewals, or other administrative barriers are likely to be a primary reason for loss of coverage. 

Restarting Medicaid Churn. The continuous coverage requirement in place during the PHE, has halted Medicaid churn — when enrollees are dis- and re-enrolled in Medicaid coverage over a short period of time. Churn happens for a number of reasons, including administrative barriers during the renewal or eligibility process. Churn can also occur when Medicaid recipients have brief periods of income fluctuation, which is common for enrollees. Most Medicaid recipients who are physically able to work are employed, frequently in low-wage, unpredictable sectors where their hours and income can adjust from month to month. The continuous coverage requirement protected these individuals from the constant cycle of gaining and losing coverage. 

How States Can Prevent Coverage Loss

Renew Based On SNAP Eligibility. CMS’ unwinding guidance allows states to automatically renew Medicaid eligibility for non-elderly beneficiaries who receive SNAP. Nearly all SNAP beneficiaries, 97 percent, qualify for Medicaid. States would protect millions from losing coverage and reduce administrative burdens by renewing Medicaid eligibility based on SNAP enrollment. 

Promote Coverage Through Waivers. States can opt to provide continuous coverage for a full year to adult Medicaid enrollees by submitting a Section 1115 waiver to CMS. This would allow individuals to undergo the eligibility determination process only once during a 12 month period, promoting coverage and lessening the administrative burden for states. CMS has also encouraged states to pursue Section 1902(e)(14) waivers, which would protect beneficiaries’ coverage, while allowing states with large administrative loads flexibility to process renewals. 

Establish Plan To Promote Continuous Coverage. As of March 2022, only 27 states have developed their required plans for outstanding Medicaid eligibility and renewal when the PHE ends. While states are required to follow elements of CMS’ unwinding guidelines, they also have broad authority over this process. What states ultimately decide could mean the difference between smooth transitions and continuous health coverage and mass Medicaid disenrollment and spiking uninsurance rates. 

Suspend Data Matching As Eligibility Tool. Electronic data matches — from a variety of data sources used to verify eligibility — are used to identify Medicaid enrollees for priority action who may lose their eligibility when the PHE ends. In practice, data matching can result in inaccurate information that causes states to begin the disenrollment process, even when the enrollee maintains eligibility. If the individual in question doesn’t follow up with the state when notified, they are likely to lose coverage due to this administrative error. Despite the recommendation from CMS that states suspend use of periodic data matching during the unwinding process, 15 states have indicated they will proceed with this practice and 16 states have yet to determine if they will move forward with electronic data matching. States that do utilize this tool are expected to see reduced coverage and increased churn

Lengthen The Redetermination Process. CMS gives states 12 months to initiate and 14 months to complete the backlog of Medicaid redeterminations, which review enrollee eligibility at the end of the PHE. The longer the redetermination process, the more time states have to reach out to enrollees to confirm eligibility or assist in the transition process to another form of coverage. Currently, 41 states plan to take 9 to 12 months to conduct the redetermination process, four states plan to take six to nine months, and three states plan to take three to six months. 

Follow Up With Enrollees. States are not required to follow up with Medicaid recipients during the redetermination process, they only need to send a renewal form and a termination notice if the enrollee does not respond. This is not adequate to ensure continuous coverage for millions of Americans. Currently 41 states plan on sending reminders and only 25 states plan on reaching out a minimum of two times. States can increase continuous coverage rates by allocating resources to reach out to enrollees multiple times and using multiple methods, such as mail, phone, text, and email. 

Update Enrollee Contact Information. Because states are not required to do anything other than mail a renewal form and termination notice, it is essential that enrollee’s addresses are updated and correct. Currently, 46 states are planning on taking some form of action to update mailing addresses prior to the expiration of the PHE, but four states still have no plan to perform this critical service. Only 35 states have a plan to follow up when enrollee mail is returned to sender.

Increasing Staff Capacity. To complete the redetermination process in a timely manner that ensures continuous coverage, states will need additional resources. Currently, 30 states plan to increase staffing towards the end of the PHE, with 21 states planning to approve overtime work, 15 states planning to hire new workers, and 12 states intending to hire contract workers. 

More information on Medicaid Awareness Month can be found here.

HEADLINES: Protect Our Care Ad Campaign Supporting Health Care Champions and Their Efforts to Lower Health Care Costs for Working People 

Protect Our Care Released Ads in the Following Districts: Reps. Cindy Axne (IA-03), Angie Craig (MN-02), Sharice Davids (KS-03), Andy Kim (NJ-03), Susie Lee (NV-03), Elissa Slotkin (MI-08), Abigail Spanberger (VA-07), and Susan Wild (PA-07)

Last week, Protect Our Care released new ads supporting health care champions from eight key districts who have fought to bring down health care costs for American families. Polling shows that health care costs remain a top priority as Americans from all walks of life overwhelmingly support reforms to bring down health care costs. The ads, released on April 13, highlighted Congressional members that delivered a ban on surprise medical bills and are fighting for reforms to lower health care costs, including capping the cost of insulin and giving Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices. Coverage shows that addressing the cost of health care continues to be at the forefront of the Democrats’ agenda. 

HEADLINES:

Politico Pulse: Health Campaign Supports House Dems. “The ads will highlight accomplishments — like passing a ban on surprise medical bills — and House-passed legislation that stalled in the Senate, including capping out-of-pocket insulin costs and allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices, ” our Alice Miranda Ollstein writes. “The investment follows on the heels of recent polling showing health care costs remain among the top issues for Democratic voters.” [Politico Pulse, 4/13/22]

Kansas Reflector: Health Care Advocacy Group Spending $5 Million to Aid Davids, Seven Other Swing-District Democrats. “Protect Our Care, a Democratic leaning organization with former Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, as an advisory board member, made the investment in House swing districts in recognition of the bipartisan appeal of reform designed to control the cost of medical services. The commercial for Davids highlights her support for a law that went into effect this year banning surprise medical bills, her advocacy for a $35 per month cap on the cost of insulin that passed the U.S. House in March and her backing of legislation granting Medicare officials authority to negotiate lower medication prices.” [Kansas Reflector, 4/14/22]

Insider NJ: New Ad: Rep. Andy Kim Featured in New Ad Campaign Supporting His Efforts to Lower Health Care Costs for Working People. “Protect Our Care is releasing a new ad thanking Rep. Andy Kim (NJ-03) for his work to bring down health care costs for American families. The ad is part of a multi-million dollar campaign in support of health care champions like Rep. Kim, who helped ban surprise medical bills and is fighting for reforms to lower health care costs, including capping the cost of insulin and giving Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices.” [Insider NJ, 4/15/22]

MIRS Newsletter: New Ad Thanks Slotkin. Protect Our Care on Wednesday released a new ad thanking U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin of the state’s 8th Congressional District, which includes Ingham, Livingston, and North Oakland counties, for her work to bring down health care costs for American families. Just last month, Rep. Slotkin helped pass the Affordable Insulin Now Act, which caps insulin costs at $35. The new ad campaign comes as President Biden and Democrats are continuing their work to lower drug prices, further reduce premiums, and expand affordable coverage to working families.” [MIRS Newsletter, 4/13/22]

Virginia Political News: Protect Our Care Is Releasing a New Ad Thanking Rep. Abigail Spanberger for Her Work. “Protect Our Care is releasing a new ad this week thanking Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) for her work to try and bring down healthcare costs. As for the ad from Protect our Care, they are spreading the $5 million between Spanberger and seven members of Congress.” [Virginia Political News, 4/13/22]

Sean Golonka, The Nevada Independent: “Protect Our Care has launched a new $5 million ad campaign across eight congressional districts, including #NV03, highlighting Dem reps’ efforts to ‘bring down health care costs for American families.’ One ad highlights Rep. Susie Lee’s (D-NV) health care efforts in Congress.” [@s_golonka, 4/13/22]

Week Three of Medicaid Awareness Month Demonstrates Urgent Need to Protect Medicaid Coverage for Millions

Washington, D.C. – Today, Protect Our Care is kicking off week three of Medicaid Awareness Month, which focuses on efforts to protect Medicaid against relentless threats by Republican lawmakers. Medicaid provides high-quality care to 79 million Americans, but too many families remain locked out of Medicaid or are facing coverage loss because of partisan attacks on the program. Week three will also examine the consequences of ending the COVID-19 public health emergency, which could result in millions of people losing Medicaid coverage if states fail to act. 

“Republicans just can’t quit their war on affordable health care,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Between failing to expand Medicaid and running on ACA repeal, GOP lawmakers are threatening coverage for millions of families across the country. They shamefully want to raise health care costs on working people and threaten access to vital care for children, older adults, people with disabilities, and other vulnerable groups.” 

Protect Our Care will continue to release fact sheets and host nationwide events with elected officials, storytellers, and health care advocates to highlight Medicaid’s critical role in America, discuss what needs to be done to expand and strengthen the program, and raise awareness of the consequences of Republican threats.

Medicaid Awareness Month 2022 themed weeks:

  • Week 1: Medicaid is Working! Week one focused on how Medicaid has improved the lives of millions even amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • Week 2: Close the Coverage Gap. Week two is bringing attention to the urgent need to close the Medicaid coverage gap. 
  • Week 3: Protect Medicaid Coverage. Week three will focus on how millions of Americans face losing their Medicaid coverage coverage when the COVID-19 public health emergency ends and how Republican officials across the country are waging a relentless war on Medicaid. 
  • Week 4: Medicaid & Health Equity. The final week will highlight how Medicaid is our most powerful tool in fighting for health equity. 

Fact Sheet: Republicans Across The Country Are Waging War On Medicaid Threatening The Health Of Millions Of Americans 

Republicans across the country are waging a relentless war on Medicaid, blocking expansion in state houses and running for Congress with an agenda to repeal the Affordable Care Act, dismantle expansion and throw millions of Americans off their care.  Nearly 79 million Americans receive their care through Medicaid and are vulnerable to these GOP attacks. The Republican war on Medicaid is a war on children, seniors, people with disabilities, rural Americans, those fighting the opioid crisis, our schools, and everyone else who benefits from Medicaid. 

Read the full fact sheet here.

TODAY: Ohio Leaders to Highlight Success of Medicaid in Ohio, Urge Lawmakers to Strengthen the Program

***MEDIA ADVISORY FOR THURSDAY, APRIL 14 AT 12PM ET *** 

While Public Health Emergency Order Remains, Ohio Should Ensure Medicaid Eligibility Is Accurately Determined and Vulnerable Ohioans Are Protected

Columbus, OH — During Medicaid Awareness Month on Thursday, April 14, 2022 at 12:00 PM ET, Pennsylvania State Senators Tina Maharath and Thomas West will join Protect Our Care Ohio to discuss the importance of protecting and strengthening the program, which provides Ohioans with access to quality, affordable health care, strengthens local economies, and improves health outcomes across the state. The event will also address the State of Ohio’s concerning approach to determining Medicaid eligibility when the emergency order ends. Yesterday, the federal COVID-19 public health emergency order was extended for 90 days, preventing thousands of vulnerable Ohioans from falling off of Medicaid.

Medicaid has served as a lifeline during the pandemic, but as the federal COVID-19 public health emergency eventually ends, Medicaid coverage will be cut for those determined ineligible by the state. While experts and President Biden Administration’s are urging states to take a year to fully determine post-emergency order eligibility, the State of Ohio plans to make all determinations in 2-3 months, using an outside vendor that will automate eligibility redeterminations. 

VIRTUAL EVENT:

WHO:
State Sen. Tina Maharath
State Rep. Thomas West
Daniel van Hoogstraten, Protect Our Care Ohio

WHAT: Virtual Press Conference

WHERE: Register for the Event Here

WHEN: Thursday, April 14, 2022 at 12:00 PM ET

NEW ADS: Protect Our Care Launches Seven Figure Ad Campaign in Support of Health Care Champions and Their Efforts to Lower Health Care Costs for Working People

Campaign Will Launch in 8 Key Districts Around the Country and Include Broadcast, Cable and Digital Platforms

Watch the Ads Here

Washington, DC — As Members of Congress return to their districts over recess, Protect Our Care is launching a multi-million dollar ad campaign in support of health care champions who’ve been working to bring down health care costs for American families. Polling shows that health care consistently ranks as a top concern for Americans, particularly when they are concerned about higher prices. People across political parties overwhelmingly support reforms to bring down health care costs. With an initial investment of $5 million, the campaign will tell the story of key members who delivered a ban on surprise medical bills and have fought for reforms to lower health care costs, including capping the cost of insulin and giving Medicare the power to negotiate for lower drug prices. 

The first ads in the series will begin running on Wednesday, April 13. The seven-figure ad campaign will blend multiple modes of communication — broadcast and cable television, streaming services, YouTube and other digital platforms. The campaign will focus in the following districts: Reps. Cindy Axne (IA-03), Angie Craig (MN-02), Sharice Davids (KS-03), Andy Kim (NJ-03), Susie Lee (NV-03), Elissa Slotkin (MI-08), Abigail Spanberger (VA-07), and Susan Wild (PA-07).

“These lawmakers are working to bring down costs for working families and give people a little more room to breathe. Health care costs are a top priority for Americans, especially at a time of mounting concerns over rising prices,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “Americans want Congress to get things done and these lawmakers are working to lower premium costs, reduce drug prices, expand coverage, and improve health care for families across the nation. They are delivering results, working across the aisle when they can, and their constituents want them to keep up the fight.”

Just last month, the House of Representatives passed the Affordable Insulin Now Act, which caps insulin costs at $35. The new ad campaign comes as President Biden and Democrats are continuing their work to lower drug prices, further reduce premiums, and expand affordable coverage to working families.

Sample Ad Script for IA-03:
Too many families worry about the cost of health care and prescription drugs.

So Congresswoman Cindy Axne did something about it.

Passing a bipartisan bill banning surprise medical bills.

Now, Congresswoman Axne is working to lower costs even more -by giving Medicare the power to negotiate lower drug prices, and capping the cost of insulin.  

Congresswoman Cindy Axne. 

Working to lower health care costs for people like you. 

Links to each of the ads can be found below:

Reps. Cindy Axne (IA-03)
Angie Craig (MN-02)
Sharice Davids (KS-03)
Andy Kim (NJ-03)
Susie Lee (NV-03)
Elissa Slotkin (MI-08)
Abigail Spanberger (VA-07)
Susan Wild (PA-07)

By Limiting Aduhelm Coverage, CMS Rejects Big Pharma’s Greed & Protects Seniors From Massive Price Hikes

Washington, DC — Yesterday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services made a final decision to limit coverage of Biogen’s Alzheimer’s drug, Aduhelm. Last year, Biogen set the price of Aduhelm at $56,000 despite mixed clinical trial results and limited benefits for patients. If Medicare were to broadly cover the drug, it would raise premium costs for millions of seniors. In response, Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach issued the following statement: 

“Despite intense lobbying by Big Pharma and their front groups, CMS made the right decision to limit Adhelm coverage. Big drug companies should not be cashing in at the expense of millions of seniors struggling to afford their everyday health costs. In addition to being unproven and potentially dangerous for patients, Adhulem is exorbitantly expensive and remains an example of why we need to pass prescription drug reform immediately.”

NEW RESEARCH: Families Could Pay Thousands More on Their Health Care If American Rescue Plan Tax Credits Expire

More Than 3 Million People Could Lose Health Coverage and Millions More Will Pay Higher Premiums If Congress Fails to Act, Including a Disproportionate Number of Young Adults, Low-Income Americans, Black Americans and Residents of Southern States

Washington, DC — Today, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Urban Institute published a report showing that more than three million people would lose their coverage if Congress fails to make the American Rescue Plan’s enhanced premium tax credits permanent. The study also shows that millions of people currently eligible for the enhanced premium tax credits could pay between $1,000 to $2,000 more a year for their health insurance without Congressional action. The American Rescue Plan made insurance more affordable than ever before, driving down premium costs for families and leading to record ACA enrollment. In response, Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach issued the following statement: 

“Congress must extend the American Rescue Plan’s premium tax credits. President Biden and Democrats in Congress are working tirelessly to keep premiums low and further reduce the cost of health care, and now we need every member of Congress to get on board and extend these tax credits. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, enrollment in high-quality coverage is at an all-time high and families have more breathing room to pay for essentials like food and rent at a time when families are concerned about rising prices. This new study underscores that the consequences of letting these tax credits expire would be devastating for millions of people.” 

Axios: Affordable Care Act Subsidy Cliff Hits Southern States Hardest

Caitlin Owens // April 8, 2022

A disproportionate share of young adults, low-income, Black Americans and residents of Southern states will lose health coverage if Congress doesn’t extend enhanced Affordable Care Act subsidies, according to a new analysis by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Why it matters: The analysis estimates that 3.1 million Americans would become uninsured when the subsidies expire beginning next year, and millions more would face much higher premiums than they currently pay. But those effects wouldn’t be felt evenly across the country.

The big picture: Democrats’ coronavirus relief package last year made ACA subsidies more generous and expanded who was eligible for them, but only temporarily.

  • Millions more people have entered the ACA marketplaces as a result. But Democrats’ efforts to extend the subsidies have stalled in the Senate, along with the rest of President Biden’s domestic agenda.

Details: The uninsured population would increase most significantly among people with incomes of 138-400% of federal poverty absent congressional action, according to the analysis.

  • When looking at race and ethnicity, Black Americans would see the largest change, followed by white Americans. Young adults ages 19-34 would be the most affected age group.
  • States that haven’t expanded Medicaid, like Florida, Georgia and South Carolina, would see some of the highest increases in their uninsured populations.

Yes, but: Extending the larger subsidies would cost the federal government more than $25 billion in 2023 alone, and $305 billion over 10 years.

Between the lines: Being uninsured obviously has implications for people who then struggle to pay for health care when they need it.

  • But it also creates financial problems for hospitals, which are required to treat patients having emergencies regardless of their ability to pay.

What we’re watching: Insurers calculate premiums months before open enrollment begins in November.

  • That means that if the tax credits aren’t extended in the first half of this year, insurers may not have time to adjust their premiums accordingly — meaning premiums would likely be inflated, the authors of the analysis argue.
  • That, in turn, could discourage marketplace enrollment and increase federal costs.

Week Two of Medicaid Awareness Month Calls for Closing the Coverage Gap & Extending Coverage to Millions

Washington, D.C. – Today, Protect Our Care is kicking off week two of Medicaid Awareness Month. Medicaid provides high-quality care to 79 million Americans, but too many families remain locked out of this essential coverage because Republican officials in 12 states refuse to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. In total, more than two million Americans are stuck in the “coverage gap,” but Congress now has the opportunity to close this gap and extend affordable health care to millions. 

“For years, Republicans have waged a partisan war on health care, and perhaps the most devastating outcome has been the refusal to expand Medicaid,” said Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse. “Millions of people have been left uninsured in states like Texas, Florida, and Georgia — all because Republicans are putting politics over people’s health and well-being. Working people, rural Americans, older adults, and people with disabilities are depending on Congress to fix this broken system and close the coverage gap now.” 

Protect Our Care will continue to release fact sheets and host nationwide events with elected officials, storytellers, and health care advocates to highlight Medicaid’s critical role in America, discuss what needs to be done to expand and strengthen the program, and raise awareness of the consequences of Republican threats.

Medicaid Awareness Month 2022 themed weeks:

  • Week 1: Medicaid is Working! Week one focused on how Medicaid has improved the lives of millions even amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • Week 2: Close the Coverage Gap. Week two is bringing attention to the urgent need to close the Medicaid coverage gap. 
  • Week 3: Stop the Threat. Week three will focus on how millions of Americans face losing their Medicaid coverage coverage when the COVID-19 public health emergency for the Covid-19 pandemic ends because Republican officials are failing to protect eligible Medicaid recipients. 
  • Week 4: Medicaid & Health Equity. The final week will highlight how Medicaid is our most powerful tool in fighting for health equity. 

FACT SHEET: Closing The Medicaid Coverage Gap Helps Millions Of Americans

Closing the Medicaid coverage gap will provide millions of Americans living in non-expansion states access to quality, affordable health coverage. Closing the Medicaid coverage gap will reduce racial inequities in health care, strengthen families, and save lives. 

2.2 Million Americans Currently Denied Medicaid Will Gain Health Coverage. There are more than two million Americans currently trapped in the Medicaid coverage gap to access zero dollar premium health coverage. Of those currently in the coverage gap, 62 percent are in the labor force, 30 percent are parents with children at home, more than 25 percent are essential workers, and 15 percent of adults have a disability. 

Drastically Reducing Racial Health Disparities. Closing the Medicaid coverage gap is the single most important policy to expand coverage and reduce racial inequities in the American health care system. People of color are more likely to have a lower median income and live in a state without Medicaid expansion, compared with their white counterparts. In 2019, 60 percent of individuals in the coverage gap were people of color. 

Read the full fact sheet here.

WATCH: Health Care Advocates & Storytellers Visit White House to Celebrate the ACA

Advocates and Storytellers Watched President Biden Announce Measures to Strengthen the ACA and Lower Costs for Millions of Americans


Watch the Full Video Here.

Yesterday, health care storytellers and advocates from across the country visited the White House to celebrate the success of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and President Biden’s ongoing efforts to improve the health care law and cut costs for families. During the event, former President Obama noted that, in the fight to pass the ACA, he and President Biden were determined to deliver because “we met too many people on the campaign trail who’d shared their stories.” The tireless work of storytellers helped usher the ACA into law, protected it from GOP repeal and sabotage, and is now driving the fight to build on the ACA today. 

The event comes as President Biden and Democrats in Congress are working to build on the ACA by driving down prescription drug prices, lowering premiums, and further expanding access to affordable care. More information on President Biden’s health care achievements can be found here

COVERAGE:

MEET THE STORYTELLERS:


DonnaMarie Woodson (Charlotte, NC):
DonnaMarie has a pre-existing condition and credits the ACA for saving her life. If she hadn’t been insured through the ACA, she says she probably would not have had screening tests that led to her diagnoses with colon cancer and breast cancer in 2015. 


Himali Patel (Atlanta, GA). Himali is an Atlanta small business owner who relies on the ACA for health insurance. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, she saw her monthly premium drop from $400 per month to $30 per month.



Teresa Acosta (Dunwoody, GA). Teresa is a single mom to a Type 1 diabetic son. She lost her job at Juvenile Diabetes Foundation because of COVID-19 but was able to get health insurance through the ACA. Thanks in part to the American Rescue Plan’s enhanced premium subsidies, she started a small business in the middle of the pandemic.


Chrysa Ostenso (Ladysmith, WI).
Chrysa and her husband own an optometry clinic in Ladysmith, Wisconsin. As small business owners, they purchase family coverage through the ACA Marketplace. After President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan into law, Chrysa’s family saw their monthly premiums go from almost $2000 to under $300. 


Amy Raslevich (Pittsburgh, PA). Amy is a breast cancer survivor and mother of two children with pre-existing conditions whose family relies on the ACA’s critical protections.


Steve Gomez (Phoenix, AZ). Steve is the father of an immunocompromised son with pre-existing conditions. Steve’s son, Anthony, was born with a serious heart defect but is protected under the ACA.

“ACA is a BFD”: Protect Our Care Hosts Lite-Brite Display Celebrating the Affordable Care Act

“ACA is a BFD” Appeared Outside the White House After President Biden Announced New Actions to Strengthen the Law

This evening, Protect Our Care hosted a Lite-Brite display outside of the White House to celebrate the success of the Affordable Care Act and highlight the ongoing efforts to lower health care costs, improve care, and increase coverage for American families. The lite-brite display comes after former President Obama joined President Biden and Vice President Harris to announce new measures to strengthen the ACA, including a proposed fix to the “family glitch,” which will lower health care costs for more than one million Americans. President Biden is also directing his administration to improve access to health care providers, protect people from low-quality coverage and continue lowering health care costs. 

President Biden and Democrats in Congress are working to build on the ACA by driving down prescription drug prices, lowering premiums, and further expanding access to affordable care. More information on President Biden’s health care achievements can be found here

Background:

President Biden Has Delivered On Health Care