PENNSYLVANIA – Yesterday, a panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down key provisions of the Affordable Care Act, putting the whole ACA at risk. If Republicans like Pat Toomey succeed in gutting the Affordable Care Act, more than 5.3 million Pennsylvanians with pre-existing conditions could be at risk of losing their health care.
“Once again, Pat Toomey is backing an effort to strip protections from the 5.3 million Pennsylvanians with pre-existing conditions,” said Beth Melena, senior communications advisor for the Pennsylvania Democratic Party. “Rather than work in a bipartisan manner to improve health care and reduce costs, Pat Toomey falls in line with Trump and far-right Republicans who would rather see insurance companies get tax breaks than see people with pre-existing conditions receive the quality, affordable health care that they deserve.”
“The office of Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., said in a statement that the senator believes it’s unconstitutional for the government to force an American to buy a product they don’t want, including the individual mandate requiring health insurance. ‘Senator Toomey supports the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision to strike down the individual mandate.’” [Pittsburgh Business Times, 12/19/19]
“Nearly half of Pennsylvania’s population have a pre-existing condition. The decision would strike down the two provisions that protect them – community rating and guaranteed issue – meaning that people with pre-existing conditions could be charged more for coverage and could be denied coverage.” [PHAN, 12/19/19]
“Patient advocacy groups lamented the ruling as a potential risk to health care access, affordability and fairness. More than 1 million Pennsylvanians use health insurance obtained through the ACA marketplace and the expansion of Medicaid in recent years, according to the Pennsylvania Health Access Network. About 80% of people who sign up for ACA plans qualify for subsidies to offset their costs.” [Tribune-Review, 12/18/19]
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