Of behalf of our hospitals and the patients they serve, we’re extremely disappointed that legislation is again being proposed that jeopardizes health care coverage for millions of Americans, including tens of thousands of Granite State residents, in an effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

Like previous efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, the Cassidy-Graham proposal will be devastating for our most vulnerable citizens, including those with chronic conditions and disabilities, as well as the elderly, by allowing states to repeal consumer protections for people with pre-existing conditions.   In addition, the Cassidy-Graham proposal would repeal the federal spending that supports federal subsidies and Medicaid expansion, leaving an estimated 32 million Americans without health insurance by 2026, according to the Commonwealth Fund. In total, it’s been estimated by Avalere that this proposal will reduce federal support by $215 billion to states, with NH getting $1 billion less from 2020 through 2026.

The block grant concept put forward by this proposal, which would change how states have been supporting Medicaid expansion, insurance subsidies and the traditional Medicaid program, will translate to approximately $120 billion less in federal funding from 2020 through 2026, according to a recent report by Avalere. The proposal goes even further and stops the block grant funding by 2026, causing additional uncertainty for years 2027 and beyond. 

Finally, we’re extremely concerned that Senate leadership is pushing to vote as early as next week, without the proper analysis from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) on the proposal and its impact on the very people they serve.  Protecting health coverage for all continues to be our priority, and because of that, we urge the Senate to create bipartisan legislation that protects health care coverage for our most vulnerable citizens and provides coverage for those who need it most.

 

Steve Ahnen is president of the New Hampshire Hospital Association