WHAT WE’D LOSE IF HOUSE REPUBLICANS SUCCEEDED…. The Affordable Care Act won’t be fully implemented until 2014, so the entirety of the law’s benefits, including coverage for tens of millions of uninsured Americans, are still on the horizon.
We know, however, that plenty of important provisions have already kicked in. The CBPP’s Shannon Spillane reports today that a successful Republican repeal push would scrap (1) coverage for young adults who can stay on their family’s plan until age 26; (2) free preventative care for 42 million seniors and 41 million other Americans with private coverage; (3) protections for children with pre-existing conditions; (4) more affordable prescription medication for seniors; and (5) tax breaks for small businesses.
Remember, Republicans are convinced that their top priority needs to be the elimination of all of these provisions.
Suzy Khimm ran a related piece today, quantifying the number of Americans who stand to get screwed over by the GOP approach to health care policy. Among the many highlights:
Four million Medicare beneficiaries are expected to receive a $250 rebate check for their 2010 prescription drug costs since the “donut hole” that exempted some seniors from drug discounts was closed on January 1, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.
More than four million small businesses are eligible to receive a tax credit for purchasing employee health insurance in 2010, according to a July 2010 study by Families USA and Small Business Majority (both are pro-reform advocacy groups). About 1.2 million small businesses are eligible to receive the maximum 35 percent tax credit.
About 2 million uninsured children with preexisting conditions cannot be denied coverage under the current law. By 2014, everyone with a preexisting condition (as many as 129 million Americans) would receive the same insurance protections.
Nearly 2.4 million young adults can now receive coverage through their parents’ health plans, under a provision that extends coverage to dependents up to age 26, according to the Obama administration. That number includes 1.8 million young adults who weren’t insured previously, as well as some 600,000 who had to buy insurance on their own.
These numbers really aren’t in dispute. This is just a summary of the data.
Some, but not all, Republicans will argue that they’ll put at least some of these benefits back — just as soon as they finish gutting the current system and find some time to figure out a new reform plan that can pass the Senate and the courts. Maybe they’ll even think of a way of reducing the deficit the way the Democratic plan does.
That’s bound to be reassuring to the millions of American families who’d be stripped of their common-sense benefits under the Republican repeal plan, right?