After reviewing Senator Lindsey Graham’s and Senator Bill Cassidy’s proposal to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), the American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM) says it strongly opposes the bill.
The organization says the bill does not meet the recommendations for health care reform legislation it spells out in its Principles of Health Reform/
The ACPM said the Graham-Cassidy proposal would eliminate insurance subsidies, coverage requirements for businesses, and requirements for essential health benefits, including clinical preventive services. Protections for people with pre-existing conditions would be eliminated by allowing states to use waivers.
“Any future legislation must retain coverage for all those currently insured, ensure patient protections including prohibitions on benefit caps and premium assistance, and require all insurance products provide first-dollar coverage for clinical preventive services,” said the group in a statement.
The legislation would also eliminate the Prevention and Public Health Fund (PPHF) in 2019. The PPHF supplies 12 percent of the budget for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
“This includes core public health programs such as the immunization program, cancer screenings, chronic disease prevention, and other critically important programs. The CDC is vital to protecting the health of our nation and cannot sustain essential programs with this cut.”
“Now is not the time to roll back access to health services that aim to prevent disease and human suffering,” said Dr. Robert Carr, President of ACPM. “Any bill that lessens patient protections and access to preventive services is moving our system in the wrong direction.”
The organization maintains that the health of the nation requires a comprehensive and accessible healthcare system that focuses on prevention.
The American College of Preventive Medicine is the professional society providing leadership in research, professional education, development of public policy, and enhancement of standards of preventive medicine for and on behalf of its physician members. Uniquely trained in both clinical medicine and public health, preventive medicine specialists are equipped to understand and reduce the risks of disease, disability, and death in individuals and population groups.