More than 600,000 Coloradans could lose coverage if ruling stands

MEDIA STATEMENT
December 15th, 2018
Contact: Adam Fox, 303-563-9108 / [email protected]

(DENVER, Colo.) – On the eve of the December 15th insurance enrollment deadline, a Texas judge ruled in favor of the Trump Administration and Republican Governors/Attorneys General and against the majority of Americans who support the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Texas v. Azar ruling by Judge Reed O’Connor strikes down the entirety of the Affordable Care Act and all protections and regulations related to it. While the ruling will almost certainly be appealed and won’t affect coverage immediately, the judge’s decision threatens to throw the health coverage system into chaos and jeopardize the health security of millions of Americans.

This unprecedented attack and irresponsible Republican lawsuit is the biggest threat for consumers in the Trump Administration’s relentless efforts to sabotage the ACA,” said Adam Fox, director of strategic engagement for the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative. “This court case could strip more than 600,000 Coloradans of the health coverage they need, throw the insurance market into chaos, and leave our state budget in crisis. Lives are at stake in this court case. We will not stand for the Trump Administration and Republican Governors and Attorneys General undermining access to care and their despicable attempt to invalidate protections the majority of Americans support and millions of Americans who live with pre-existing conditions rely on.

“Additionally, the ruling, if it stands, would eliminate both the ACA’s Medicaid expansion provision and the availability of federal financial assistance for coverage in the individual market, putting health coverage and care beyond the reach of many. The decision would also eliminate protections for women’s health, LGBTQ+ individuals and adults over 50 would be charged more for their health care coverage. It also threatens the stability of clinics and rural hospitals and their surrounding communities. The ACA has become fundamental to our health care system, providing millions with high quality, affordable health care that was once out of reach to many.

“The appeals court should move swiftly to reverse this decision based both on the weak legal grounding and the unspeakable harm overturning the ACA would unleash on Coloradans, and the American people.”

Coloradans should continue to enroll in coverage, as current health insurance options will not be immediately affected while the court case is appealed.

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Colorado Consumer Health Initiative represents 45+ Colorado health organizations with more than 500,000 health care consumer members, advocating for high-quality, affordable, and equitable health care for all Coloradans.  

 

A June Kaiser Family Foundation poll found 76 percent of voters said that it is very important for the protections for pre-existing conditions to remain in place. One in four Americans lives with a pre-existing condition, and millions more are at risk, given the likelihood of developing a chronic health condition at some point in life.

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