Last week, it was reported that the failed Graham-Cassidy repeal and replace bill may be making another appearance in some form. In its original form, the bill was defeated as it sparked a huge public outcry and the mobilization of advocates around the country. The public saw it for what it was – a bad bill that would’ve left millions without health coverage.
To recap, the bill offered no guaranteed protections against charging more for people with pre-existing conditions; allowedstates to waive rules for essential health benefits; ended federal subsidies for purchasing insurance; halted Medicaid expansion and capped Medicaid funding. The bill also replacedexpansion Medicaid and subsidies that assist Marketplace enrollees gain coverage with a block grant to states.
The Hill reports that “The new bill would keep the core element of last year’s bill from Graham and Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), which is repealing ObamaCare’s subsidies and Medicaid expansion and giving that money to the states in a block grant.” The report goes on to state that “The White House told The Hill earlier this month that it “fully supports” the effort, and White House staff have been attending meetings on the plan…”
It is no surprise that the Administration would support this latest effort as the president’s FY2019 budget sought to repeal the ACA and replace it with something similar to the failed Graham-Cassidy plan. The HHS budget summary also called for implementing such a plan “as soon as possible.”
Instead of reviving failed efforts that undermine the health care of millions of consumers, we call on the Administration and Congress to work together and expand access to quality coverage.
- See our letter with the Medicare Rights Center opposing the original bill: https://www.medicareadvocacy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Medicare-Rights-CMA-Letter-GC-091917.pdf
- See the hill article about the new Graham-Cassidy like bill: http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/388000-graham-working-on-new-obamacare-repeal-bill