June 26, 2017

WASHINGTON – The Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the non-partisan analysis arm for Congress, determined that if the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 is passed in the Senate, by 2026, 22 million Americans will lose health care. Compared to current law, 15 million more will be uninsured by 2018. The Senate repeal bill was introduced last Thursday following the passage of the House bill in May. These bills work to dismantle the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which was signed into law in March 2010, and has provided affordable health care for millions of Americans.

“The Affordable Care Act brought stability, reassurance and affordability to millions of Americans. More than 8 in 10 previously uninsured Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders qualify for financial assistance under the ACA,” said Kathy Ko Chin, president and CEO of the Asian & Pacific Islander Health Forum. “The Senate and House health care repeal bills will only make those who rely on coverage provided from the ACA worse off. These bills will reduce the financial support families need by eliminating Medicaid expansion, eliminating the Marketplace and cutting crucial funding for states and individuals.”

Overall, the CBO score demonstrates that more Americans, including Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, would be uninsured if the ACA is repealed. Health coverage will be of lower value and will not meet the needs of consumers. The health care repeal bills are bad for the health of all Americans, particularly those who are low-income, racial and ethnic minorities and persons with chronic conditions.

“Individuals with pre-existing conditions are at significant risk of being priced out of comprehensive health coverage,” said Ko Chin. “They would see an increase in premiums, especially if they live in a state that waived the core consumer protections around essential health benefits.”

APIAHF opposes the Senate health care repeal bill and asks that Senators work to improve health care access for all Americans, instead of dismantling the historic gains seen under the ACA over the last seven years.