PENNSYLVANIA — Today, one day before the 12-year anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act, Rep. Susan Wild, State Rep. Bridget Kosierowski and three Pennsylvania health advocates whose lives, families and finances have been positively impacted by the Affordable Care Act joined together on Zoom to demand Republicans stop their attacks on the health care law.
The Affordable Care Act has covered a record 31 million Americans and helped protect more than 100 million with pre-existing conditions, and President Biden and Democrats have continued to build on these efforts, lower premiums and protect care. Yet, far-right candidates for Senate and Governor in Pennsylvania and national Republican elected officials are championing an agenda of jeopardizing coverage, raising health costs and even plotting to repeal the ACA yet again.
Watch the full press conference here.
“After reducing premiums by 40% through the American Rescue Plan, Democrats have continued our focus on reducing health care costs, like lowering the price of prescription drugs for Americans across the country and capping insulin costs,” said Rep. Susan Wild. “Meanwhile, the Republican party has spent the last few weeks doubling down on their agenda of eliminating coverage, raising premiums and also hiking taxes.”
“One of the most important things about the ACA is that it was able to provide 135,000,000 Americans with pre-existing conditions the protection from discrimination,” said State Rep. Bridget Kosierowski, the only nurse in the PA State House. “When I see, nationally, the Republican Party’s agenda of repealing health care, and increasing premiums and tax hikes, I am very fearful of history repeating itself. It is very critical that we remind all Americans that the Democrats are delivering for Pennsylvanians and united around a popular agenda that ensures access to affordable health care and lower premiums.”
“Health care for Cole has meant that he gets to be home with his family and in his community where he belongs, instead of needing to be in a facility far away from all of us. He is bright, vibrant, hilarious and filled with life and he deserves to access his community, his education and the world the same way as anyone else. ACA has allowed him to receive the care he needs at home to do all of these things,” said Victoria Schiano, a Downingtown resident whose son Cole has mitochondrial disease and benefits from the ACA. “A Republican majority–a majority railing against basic human rights like health care–would harm my family and be devastating for all Americans.”
“We really were talking seriously about what this means. Does this mean my parents need to dip into their retirement? Consider using equity in their house, selling their house, because at that point I was so ill I was unable to work,” said Kristin Volchansky, a Hellertown resident whose family was saved financially by the ACA’s Medicaid Expansion. “Without Medicaid expansion, I am not insurable in the private market and it would mean almost certainly taking on a massive amount of debt.”
“Most people are most familiar with the ACA about pre-existing conditions and the expansion of coverage to more working adults, but it does so much more than people know,” said Pittsburgh resident Amy Raslevich, a breast cancer survivor and mom of kids with pre-existing conditions. “Since 2017, my bills are now well over a million dollars just for the cancer treatment and recovery, but the insurance company can’t cut off payments because the ACA eliminated lifetime limits as well…I could spend my time on getting well and getting back to my life without having to worry about bankruptcy or choosing to limit or end the treatment.”
Watch the full press conference here.