HRC strongly condemned the Senate Republicans’ hatched-in-secret proposal to gut the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and undermine access to health care for as many as 23 million Americans. If it passes, this bill will have a disproportionately negative impact on LGBTQ people.
“If the Trump-McConnell health care bill becomes law, it will threaten the lives of countless Americans,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “For LGBTQ people, who already face health care disparities, this proposal is downright dangerous. Both the House and Senate versions of the bill gut core provisions of the Affordable Care Act and cut off tens of millions of Americans from life-saving health care coverage while increasing out-of-pocket costs. This unconscionable proposal — drafted behind closed doors, without public input — is a disturbingly harmful bill that Senators must reject.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has led an unprecedented covert approach to passing a bill that would affect millions of Americans and one-sixth of the American economy. After working behind closed doors, without public input and keeping both their constituents and health care advocates in the dark, they are now planning to ram through a bill without a single hearing and no meaningful time for health care experts and the American people to review, understand, and debate.
Because of the ACA, thousands of low-income people living with HIV have been able to obtain health insurance through the Medicaid expansion. This critical coverage ensures that people living with HIV have access to the lifesaving treatments. The so-called “Better Care Reconciliation Act” proposes drastic changes to Medicaid and it will strip many of these people, and the most vulnerable among us, of essential health care coverage.
This bill will disproportionately impact LGBTQ Americans, leaving them with some of the lowest rates of insurance coverage in the nation. The LGBTQ community has benefitted from the ACA’s tax credit structure and the Medicaid Expansion, and the rescission of both of these critical components will have devastating consequences for a community already facing significant health care disparities.
In another dangerous move, the Senate bill would also cut federal funding for Planned Parenthood, which would jeopardize the ability of clinics to deliver preventive health services, including HIV testing and transition-related care. The ACA’s public health and prevention fund, established to expand investments in the nation’s public health infrastructure, would also be repealed. Health centers, like those operated by Planned Parenthood, often offer the only culturally competent healthcare available, especially in rural and isolated areas.