(Boston, MA)- Statement from Health Care For All's Executive Director Amy Rosenthal regarding the potential repeal of the individual mandate under the tax reform bill:
“Health Care For All is deeply concerned about the latest effort to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. Including the elimination of the individual mandate as part of the push to reform the tax code is nothing more than another attempt to repeal the law without a viable replacement.
“The Congressional Budget Office estimates that this move could allocate up to $338 billion for tax cuts over 10 years. However, this would fall on the backs of the13 million Americans who will lose access to health coverage if the requirement is lifted. Axing the mandate would also have a direct impact on premiums which, based on the CBO analysis, could increase an average of 10% for most years in that decade.
“As we learned in Massachusetts, the individual mandate is a key element of the law. It is the mechanism that allows access to care for Americans with preexisting conditions and helps stabilize the insurance marketplaces by ensuring that both healthy and sicker individuals purchase health plans.
“Even if the repeal effort moves forward at the federal level, Massachusetts would keep the state requirement to have health insurance intact, ensuring that residents in the state have the tools available to them to access the health care services they need. This requirement was enacted back in 2006 and has allowed the Commonwealth to reach the highest insurance rate in the country with 97.5% of the population covered, according to the last numbers released by the U.S. Census.
“We thank our Congressional Delegation, especially Senators Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren, for opposing these sneaky tactics to repeal a law that has helped millions of Americans access affordable and quality care. We are also thankful to the Baker Administration for their commitment to coverage and care. HCFA encourages Massachusetts residents to reach out to friends and family in other states so that they can contact their Senators and House Representatives to tell them how important keeping the individual mandate is to make steady progress towards universal health care.”
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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.