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With Lives at Stake, Congress Must Start Acting on Health Care

Read the full op-ed on The Hill.

"With midterm elections rapidly approaching, over half of voters say that health care is one of the three most important issues impacting their vote.

Americans across the country, no matter their political leanings, agree that health care needs to be a priority for policymakers.

However, in recent months, Congress has failed to make meaningful moves to address the health concerns experienced by millions of Americans, from high deductibles to ever narrowing coverage networks. If Americans on both sides of the aisle agree that health care must be a priority, why has Congress been silent?

To compound the problem, as Congress fails to take the lead in addressing health care, this administration is eroding the quality and availability of health care across the country, putting families and communities at risk.

Most recently, the administration finalized a rule expanding access to short-term, limited-duration insurance. These short-term plans, which were intended as a stopgap between more comprehensive coverage, will soon be widely available across the country for extended periods of time.

While it’s tempting for patients looking for low monthly premiums, these plans' skimpy coverage, including not covering essential health benefits such as maternity care and mental health treatment, puts consumers in a vulnerable position if they fall ill and actually need health insurance that will pay for their care.

Between expanding access to short-term health plans and eroding preexisting condition protections to pushing to proliferate the use of association health plans, it is clear that having the administration take the lead on the country's health care is detrimental to consumers; it is time for Congress to step in and take action now."

 

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