National Breast Cancer Coalition

For Immediate Release:

National Breast Cancer Coalition Statement on Passage of the American Health Care Act

May 4, 2017
Contact: Brandi Felser // bfelser@breastcancerdeadline2020.org

“House Republicans made it clear they do not care about our lives.”

Washington, DC – Today, the House of Representatives, with 217 Republican votes, passed dangerous health care legislation that in reality eliminates nationwide protections for individuals with pre-existing conditions and strips access to health care for millions of Americans.  Despite the American people’s overwhelming opposition to this legislation, the bill was rushed through Congress without an updated Congressional Budget Office (CBO) score so the American public would know the true consequences of this legislation.

“Shocking.  And shame on them.  The House has made it clear that they do not care about our lives. They passed a bill to undermine access to health care for all of us with no hearing, no CBO score and no transparency,” said NBCC President Fran Visco. “What was the rush? Where are their values? Where is their humanity? Their attack on coverage for pre-existing conditions, disguised in funding for high risk pools does not fool us. Their attack on Medicaid will hurt the most vulnerable. There is nothing to like about this bill.”

In addition to eliminating protections for individuals with a pre-existing condition, be it cancer or even a minor chronic ailment, the proposed legislation will raise premiums for millions of consumers, charge older Americans dramatically more for insurance, and end Medicaid expansion. This is especially problematic for women and men with, and at risk of, breast cancer as the average age of diagnosis is 60 years old. 

Furthermore, this legislation guts essential health benefits by allowing states to opt out of key components of the ACA. This bill also allows states to set up high risk pools which are more expensive, offer less coverage, and oftentimes have coverage gaps. In addition, individuals would be subject to high premiums and deductibles.

“Many would agree that the Affordable Care Act was a game changer for women and men with, and at risk of, breast cancer who needed access to quality health care,” said NBCC President Fran Visco. “For those who were barred from coverage due to a preexisting condition, or are enduring repeated bouts of cancer, or are poor, the ACA has literally saved their lives. What happens to them now?”

NBCC urges advocates to contact their Senators and voice your strong opposition to the AHCA. Now, more than ever, we need to make our voices heard.

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