Boston. – “Today, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in a case that challenges the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a law that provides coverage for over 23 million Americans. Striking down the ACA during a global pandemic would be devastating, jolting our health care system at a time where we need stability for individuals and families.”The ACA has been instrumental in building on the progress of our state health reform law by providing new subsidies and consumer protections. It allows young adults to stay on their parents’ insurance until age 26; protects people with pre-existing conditions; provides access to preventive services at no cost; opens the door for over 300,000 residents to enroll into comprehensive coverage through Medicaid expansion and 200,000 people to qualify for tax credits through the Health Connector; starts the process to close the Medicare donut hole, making prescription drugs more affordable for seniors; and eliminates lifetime caps on coverage; among many other benefits.
“If the ACA is invalidated, Massachusetts cannot just return to the protections and subsidies available through our 2006 state health reform law depends on a partnership with the federal government. A report issued on Monday by the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation estimates that 422,000 Massachusetts residents could lose health insurance coverage if the ACA is struck down, more than doubling the number of uninsured. The state also could lose as much as $3.3 billion per year in federal health care spending.
“We are proud that stakeholders in the state – consumer advocates, policymakers, insurers, hospitals, providers, and businesses – support a “culture of coverage” in the Commonwealth and remain committed to ensuring access to quality and affordable care for our residents. However, without the ACA, it would be incredibly challenging for Massachusetts to maintain the levels of health coverage we have today.
“Despite all this, we remain hopeful that the Supreme Court will understand how many lives are at stake and dismiss the arguments challenging the constitutionality of the ACA. National legal and health care experts believe this case simply does not have legal merit and that the court will ultimately uphold the law. If the court strikes down any portion of the law, we expect the Biden administration to work with Congress to keep these protections in place for people across the country. Our leaders have an obligation to keep health care accessible and affordable especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that means protecting the provisions in the ACA that people have come to rely on.”