June 11, 2018/Press

DC, NC Republicans Work to Undercut Protections Against Preexisting Conditions

Raleigh – DC and Raleigh Republicans are trying to further upend people’s health insurance by undercutting protections against preexisting conditions that help ensure millions of North Carolinians with preexisting conditions can’t be denied health insurance or priced out.

In Washington, the Trump administration asked federal courts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act’s protections for preexisting conditions, which helps 130 million Americans, including nearly 4 million North Carolinians.

If the law is undermined, people with preexisting conditions would be charged several times more based on their medical history. Even if the new plan preserved the portion of the law that prohibits issuers from denying coverage, consumers with pre-existing conditions could still be priced out of the market.

In Raleigh, General Assembly Republicans are advancing a bill that will allow health care plans without key patient protections, including preexisting condition protections. The move will have broader effects, though, as healthier people flock to the unregulated junk plans and out of the individual insurance market, raising prices for sick people with fewer options.

Both measures mean higher health care prices and worse coverage. National Republicans and their Raleigh counterparts are trying to take us backwards to a time when people with histories of serious conditions, such as cancer or heart attacks, were regularly denied coverage.

“Republicans in Raleigh and DC are trying to gut protections and push junk insurance for people who are sick, have asthma, a mental illness, heart disease, or any other preexisting protection,” NCDP Executive Director Kimberly Reynolds said. “Raleigh Republicans are in lockstep with their national counterparts, and both are trying to rig our health care against the sick and people with preexisting conditions. Only voting them out in November will change that.”