The American Health Care Act, recently passed by the House of Representatives, shows the president’s and the Republican- dominated Congress’s willingness to take healthcare from millions of Americans. The effort to repeal Obamacare (the Affordable Care Act), reveals callous indifference to the economic plight of our citizens.
“Americans have to make a choice,” stated Congressman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah). “Rather than getting that new iPhone …maybe they should invest in their own health care.” “The Medicaid population, which is (on) a free credit card as a group, do probably the least preventive medicine and taking care of themselves…,” sniffed physician-Congressman Roger Marshal
These cynical attacks on the soon-to-be uninsured mask the true agenda of Republican “health care reform”—to provide extra funds as a cushion for “tax reform”—or tax cuts for the wealthy. Republicans want to pass massive tax cuts as part of a health care package (rather than a tax reform bill) to avoid having to offset (or make up for) the revenue losses required under the reconciliation process they favor to avoid having to work with Democrats on tax reform. This underhanded strategy, plus the Republican/Libertarian (Rand Paul) opposition to the federal government as protector of the health and welfare of its citizens, lies behind the tactics to repeal (but not replace) Obamacare.
So, who wins if “Trump Care” (the American Health Care Act, narrowly passed by the House), survives the Senate?
Citizens over 65 who rely on Medicare will face an uncertain future because some Republicans are threatening to dismantle and “voucherize” Medicare.
Also, people who choose less comprehensive coverage (not an option under Obamacare) will pay lower rates for insurance that customarily covers too few major health disasters that do not involve preexisting conditions. However, preventive care, prescription costs, and prenatal care including labor and delivery are generally “not covered” and would be billed to each patient. Most Americans are unaware of the paucity of coverage of such health insurance plans
Not surprisingly many professional health care associations (e.g., the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Nurses Association and the American Hospital Association) have strongly denounced the Trump/Ryan bill.
We cannot and we will not allow health care to be denied to any American simply because he/she is perceived to be one of “those people” who are not deserving of the same health care we wish for ourselves and our families. Not ever.
Vice President for Public Policy and Political Action
Chair, Healthcare Task Force