Kenney declares ridding Affordable Care Act would be bad for less fortunate
Mayor Jim Kenney and other city and state leaders took to City Hall on Monday to speak against the Graham-Cassidy bill, proposed by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA).
The Republican legislation would repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and also swap funding on medicaid expansion and individual insurance market subsidies all the way through 2026.
“People who are healthy and well-off can always get health insurance coverage in this country,” Kenney said. “But what the Affordable Care Act does is make sure that health insurance coverage isn’t only for them. But it is also available to those who are less fortunate.”
As of now, which Kenney noted during the conference, more than 200,000 Philadelphia residents gained health coverage through the Affordable Care Act, including 160,000 through medicaid and just about 60,000 through the marketplace.
With the newly updated bill, four states: Alaska, Maine, Arizona and Kentucky, would receive more funding. Some of the regulatory changes include states deciding on how much insurers can charge people with pre-exisiting conditions.
The bill still excludes coverage health coverage for abortion, an issue that Kenney said “deprives thousands of women in Philadelphia” of preventive health services.
“The president made a statement about ‘what do you have to lose,’ he specifically challenged the African-American community,” said 2nd District Congressman Dwight Evans (D-PA).
“Well, what people have to lose is their healthcare, which if they don’t have healthcare where we in Congress have healthcare, you know exactly what that would mean in terms of jobs and their ability to move around. It would have a devastating impact,” Evans added.
The repeal can also have effects on homeless Philadelphia residents who are receiving medical care for physical and mental health, that may have otherwise not been eligible before the Affordable Care Act.
“This is going to be devastating for Project Home in the Philadelphia city,” said Monica Mcurdy, Vice President of Healthcare Services or Project home.
As of now, the deadline for the Republican bill to be passed is Saturday with 50 votes.
“Imagine you have overcome homelessness, you have achieved pertinent supportive housing, you are getting medication for your serious mental illness and you were able to get health insurance through expanding medicaid,” McCurdy said. Now that goes away.”