State Senator, Physician, Advocate, and Patient Join NH Health Care Coalition, Protect Our Care New Hampshire in Denouncing ACA Lawsuit Decision
(Concord, NH) – After yesterday’s disastrous decision by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in the Texas v. United States lawsuit, Protect Our Care New Hampshire was joined by local experts at the State Capitol for a press conference to discuss the implications of the decision for Granite Staters.
This lawsuit to overturn the entire Affordable Care Act, spearheaded by a coalition of Republican-led states, could leave tens of thousands of Granite Staters without access to health care, and put the care of the 572,200 million Granite Staters with pre-existing conditions in grave jeopardy.
“If the ACA is to go away, there are many important and broadly supported aspects to the ACA that would be eliminated – access to coverage for younger adults to get coverage under their parents’ plans, no caps on lifetime benefits, pre-existing condition exclusions, coverage of preventive and screening benefits with no co-pay, requirement for coverage for mental health and addiction treatment services, and premium subsidies for lower income adults,” said Zandra Rice Hawkins, Executive Director Granite State Progress.
“We see people stressed by financial limitations, without any kind of reliable, affordable trustworthy insurance to deal with the vagueness of life. This is the unspoken human cost that is going to be impacted by this,” said Dr. Randy Hayes, a retired physician and member of the Kent Street coalition.
Pepper Mead of Derry, NH, whose family accesses health care through the ACA due to her husband working for an employer that does not offer health insurance, said, “We were left on our own to get insurance. Without the ACA I would not have been able to get health insurance at all. With a pre-existing condition I would not have gotten the coverage I have now. I don't know what the future holds for me or my family now – I am terrified.”
State Senator Dan Feltes said, “it is more important now than ever to stand up to the assault on our health care system.”
After the Affordable Care Act was enacted, the uninsured rate decreased from 10.7% in 2013 to 5.7% in 2018, and it remains below 6% today. Almost 50,000 individuals in New Hampshire were able to enroll in health insurance through the NH Marketplace Exchange in 2018, and more than 70% applied for financial assistance provided under the Affordable Care Act to pay for insurance.
- Protections for 572,200 Granite Staters with pre-existing conditions would end.
- 89,000 Granite Staters would lose their coverage, causing a 136 percent increase in the uninsured rate.
- Medicaid expansion would be repealed, meaning the 57,000 Granite Staters who are covered through Medicaid expansion could lose coverage.
- 21,150 New Hampshire seniors will pay more for prescription drugs because the Medicare “donut hole” will be reopened.
- 9,000 New Hampshire young adults will no longer be able to stay on their parents’ coverage.
- Protections for women, who insurance companies previously charged 50 percent more than men, would be gone.
- Financial assistance that helps 31,179 Granite Staters purchase health care in the marketplace would end.
- Key support for rural hospitals would disappear, leaving New Hampshire hospitals on the hook for $234 million more in uncompensated care costs.
- 690,524 Granite Staters could once again have to pay for preventive care, like mammograms and flu shots.
- Lifetime and annual caps on coverage would once again be allowed, allowing insurers to put limits in care for 545,000 privately insured Granite Staters.
- Insurers will no longer have to cover a set of essential health benefits, including hospitalization, prescription drugs, or mental health services.