Issue Report ● Health Care
For Immediate Release: 
March 21, 2012

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, 165 million Americans with private insurance and 48 million seniors and disabled Americans with Medicare are experiencing better coverage and lower, or slowed growth, in health care costs. 

Democrats remain committed to protecting Medicare’s guarantee and standing against insurance company discrimination, while Republicans continue to call for – and vote for – repealing patient protections, ending the Medicare guarantee, and raising health care costs for seniors by $6,000 per year. 

When it comes to healthcare, the contrasts between Democrats and Republicans could not be more clear:

Democrats’ Affordable Care Act Provides Lower Costs and Better Coverage:  

The new health reform law means that Americans have better private insurance protections today

  • Up to 17 million children with pre-existing conditions are now free from discrimination by insurers.
  • Over 2.5 million young people have accessed care through their parents’ private insurance plans, including 1.3 million minority youth.
  • Lifetime limits on over 105 million Americans with private insurance have been eliminated.
  • 54 million Americans with private insurance have received free preventive care services. 
  • Almost 50,000 American adults with pre-existing conditions have obtained health coverage through state Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plans. 
  • 32.5 million seniors have accessed free Medicare preventative care services.
  • 2.3 million seniors have taken advantage of free Medicare annual wellness visits.
  • Over 360,000 small businesses have taken advantage of tax credits, making it more affordable to provide insurance to over 2 million workers

GOP Efforts Roll Back Patient Protections, Put Insurance Companies In Control of Health Care:

Republicans, on the other hand, have voted 14 times to repeal patient protections and new health care benefits – and Republicans have voted three times for a budget that ends the Medicare guarantee and raises health care costs for seniors by over $6,000 per year. The budget they introduced yesterday doubles down on their plan to end the Medicare guarantee and repeals patient protections.  

If Republicans had it their way, new benefits would be taken away from Americans now receiving them and:  

  • Up to 4 million small businesses would lose access to $40 billion in tax credits, designed to help make health insurance more affordable for employees.
  • Over 48 million Medicare beneficiaries could see their drug costs increase, including the 5.1 million seniors who have already received 50% discounts on their brand name drugs.
  • Over 48 million Medicare beneficiaries could see cost increases for important preventative care measures and may lose access to free annual checkups.
  • Up to 15 million Americans who are sick or injured could be dropped from their private insurance because of a simple mistake on an application.
  • Over 2,800 employers would lose access to the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program, which is currently helping them provide health benefits to 13 million retirees who are not yet eligible for Medicare. 

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