They Can’t Buy Us Off

Marc Stier |

We are hearing today that the Trump administration is “buying off” support from members of Congress for the bill to repeal the ACA by adding more money for one thing or another.

The latest is a plan to add $8 billion to the $130 billion already set aside for the high-risk pools to provide coverage for those with pre-existing conditions.

A new report from the Center for American Progress shows that — as we have been saying — this is far less money than needed to provide insurance to everyone with pre-existing conditions. At a minimum, 54,000 Pennsylvanians would be eligible for a high risk pool. Even if they pay $10,000 a year — which many could not afford — the state would need $1.4 billion a year to provide insurance for them. But the AHCA, even with the addition $8 billion over ten years, would only give Pennsylvania $498 million a year. PA would be $1 billion a year short.

Need I add that the state government is in no shape to make up the difference?

Or that actually over five million Pennsylvanians have pre-existing conditions and might need to take advantage of the high-risk pool?

Or that 1.3 million Pennsylvanians a year will lose health insurance as a result of the GOP health plan.

Or that people between the ages of 55 and 64 even without pre-existing conditions would pay 2 to 4 times as much for health insurance?

Or that the ACA has helped provide treatment for 148,000 Pennsylvanians who suffer from the substance abuse crisis in our state, most of whom would lose that treatment if the GOP health care plan is enacted?

And note that the changes in the rules on pre-existing conditions and essential benefits made possible by this legislaiton apply to all health insurance not just insurance secured through the ACA. If you have employer based insurance and lives in a state that opts-out of the ACA regulations, your policy may not cover your pre-existing conditions. And it may again have annual or lifetime limits on the health care you can receive. 

Call your member of Congress today and demand that he not be fooled by the latest alternative facts from Trump and Ryan and their attempt at a buy-off. They need to defend our health care. No matter where you live, you can call 866-426-2631 to get connected.