(Boston, MA) - "Massachusetts residents, physicians and businesses are concerned about the potential impact of the Graham-Cassidy proposal in Massachusetts. This new attempt to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and to undermine Medicaid is just as bad as the prior bills defeated in the Senate, if not worse.
"Between 25 and 38 states would see their health care funding slashed in the short term, Massachusetts being one of the most impacted by the cuts. Ultimately all states will see a negative financial impact in the long run, as the block grants included in the plan are temporary, with the appropriation ending by 2026.
"U.S. census data released last week highlighted the progress that the Commonwealth has made in terms of expanding health insurance, with almost 97.5% of the population covered. This achievement is on the line if the Graham-Cassidy bill moves forward in the Senate. Massachusetts could see a reduction in federal funding of more than $5B. This would strain the state budget and leave thousands of residents - including seniors, children and people with disabilities - without access to quality and affordable health care.
"Moreover, by overturning protections for patients with preexisting conditions and by slashing essential health benefits, the bill would make it so that even patients that still have coverage might be unable to access meaningful care.
"Massachusetts is an example of how health reform can work when all stakeholders share and value a culture of coverage. Consumers, patients, the business community, physicians, providers, insurers and policy-makers have worked together over the years in advancing a common health care agenda. We are joining efforts again to say no to this damaging proposal."
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Health Care For All (HCFA) is a Massachusetts nonprofit advocacy organization working to create a health care system that provides comprehensive, affordable, accessible, and culturally competent care to everyone, especially the most vulnerable among us. We achieve this as leaders in public policy, advocacy, education and service to consumers in Massachusetts. For more information about HCFA, visit our website at www.hcfama.org. You can also call our free HelpLine (800) 272-4232 if you need help applying for health insurance.
The Massachusetts Medical Society, with some 25,000 physicians and student members, is dedicated to educating and advocating for the patients and physicians of Massachusetts. The Society, under the auspices of NEJM Group, publishes the New England Journal of Medicine, a leading global medical journal and web site, and Journal Watch alerts and newsletters covering 13 specialties. The Society is also a leader in continuing medical education providing accredited and certified activities across the globe for physicians and other health care professionals. Founded in 1781, MMS is the oldest continuously operating medical society in the country. For more information please visit www.massmed.org, www.nejm.org, or www.jwatch.org.
The Associated Industries of Massachusetts is a dynamic and innovative organization dedicated to supporting pro-business legislation and helping employers make sense of confusing employment laws. AIM engages in public policy work on behalf of 4,000 Massachusetts employers who together employ one out of five residents of the commonwealth. We do so guided by the belief that only a vibrant, private-sector economy creates opportunity that binds the social, governmental and economic foundations of our commonwealth.