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Contact: Pat McConahay, Communications Director
Disability Rights California
Disability Rights California cheered the March 23 U.S. House leadership move to pull the American Health Care Act (AHCA) from the floor without a vote. The action was in response to overwhelming pressure by advocates and the public as well as opposition from Democrats and some Republicans. They understood the devastating effect this legislation would have on millions of Americans.
The AHCA would have jeopardized health care coverage to more than 3.5 million Californians who receive coverage through the ACA’s Medicaid expansion. It also called for elimination of “essential health benefits” mandates, leaving people with no guarantees of coverage for mental health, substance abuse, and other critical services. The AHCA’s proposed deep cuts and caps on the Medi-Cal programs would roll back 50 years of progress in ensuring Californians with disabilities have the health care and long-term care services they depend on to stay healthy and live in their homes and communities.
After last Friday’s action, we know our voices were heard and our country better understands that health care is a fundamental right. However, there are reports of renewed negotiations between the White House and House hardliners on the AHCA. There are actions the Administration can still pursue that would undermine the ACA and Medicaid. We must remain vigilant and work together to stave off further threats, not only to the disability community, but to all Californians.
Disability Rights California is a non-profit organization founded in 1978 to protect the rights of people with disabilities. Check out our website (www.disabilityrightsca.org), Facebook and twitter @DisabilityCA.