A Healthy Blog

Massachusetts health care — wonky, with a healthy dose of reality

We Need To Defend The ACA

We Need To Defend The ACA

July 24, 2012

Last Friday, HCFA hosted a conference call to discuss the Supreme Court decision on the ACA and its implications for both Massachusetts and the nation at large.

The key takeaway from the call? The Affordable Care Act needs to be defended in the upcoming policy debates, even here in Massachusetts.

Folks on the call and regular readers of this blog know that the ACA is good for Massachusetts. That’s why we’re asking: will you write a Letter to the Editor in your local paper supporting the Affordable Care Act?

On the conference call, Lorianne Sainsbury-Wong at Health Law Advocates talked about how the Supreme Court upheld the individual mandate as constitutional. Katherine Howitt at Community Catalyst warned us about how millions of people could still go insured if states do not expand Medicaid – a fight that’s brewing in states all around the country (but not in Massachsuetts). And Brian Rosman listed off the many ways that national health reform is helping Massachusetts every day – and the big decisions we’re going to have to make.

Our conference call exceeded our expectations – dozens of folks from all across the Commonwealth tuned in and asked their questions. And we agreed: the next step in achieving universal healthcare is protecting the ACA right here at home, in the upcoming elections.

Now, last week, US Senator Scott Brown wrote an editorial in the MetroWest Daily News slamming the Affordable Care Act claiming it’s bad for Massachusetts. He’s flat out wrong. And we need to get out the truth.

The truth is that the ACA is good for Massachusetts. It’s good for our seniors, who’ll save money on their prescription drugs. It’s good for our young adults, who can stay on their parents plan until they’re 26. It’s good for our small businesses, which get tax credits to cover their employees.The Affordable Care Act is good for all of our health because well over 780,000 people in our state have already received free preventive services – such as mammograms and colonoscopies – or a free annual wellness visit with their doctor.

And much, much more.

We don’t know if Senator Brown will continue writing these kinds of editorials, but we do need to respond.

Please voice your support for the ACA and the SCOTUS’s ruling by writing a letter to your local newspaper and get involved with HCFA. A basic template to base your letter on can also be found at that same link.

Included here is a list of local towns, newspapers, and letter to the editor email addresses based on the RSVPs we got to our conference call.

Again, thank you to all who participated in the call, and a special thank you to Brian, Lorianne, and Katherine Howitt for lending us their expertise in demystifying the SCOTUS’s decision and its implications. It’s time to gear up to defend the ACA – and that means supporting it one letter at a time.

-Ari Fertig and Casey Lowell