NRHA to Senate: Vote No on the American Health Care Act
Erin Mahn Zumbrun
The National Rural Health Association urges the Senate to protect rural Americans’ access to health care and to vote no on the American Health Care Act (AHCA).
NRHA does not support the AHCA and has called on members of Congress to vote no on this legislation. While many provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are not working in rural America, the AHCA does not address the problems and instead provides coverage for fewer rural Americans leading to poorer rural health outcomes and an increase in the rural hospital closure crisis.
If the AHCA is passed in its current form, CBO estimates this bill will result in 23 million fewer people with health insurance over 10 years and would reduce the deficit by $119 billion over 10 years, mainly a result of cuts to the Medicaid program.
Rural Americans are already facing an access to health care crisis. Since 2010, 79 rural hospitals have closed. Right now, 673 additional facilities are vulnerable and could close—this represents over 1/3 of rural hospitals in the U.S.
The Senate has long understood the challenges of the rural health care delivery system and the health care needs of the 62 million Americans that call rural home. NRHA asks the Senate to protect their access to health care.
Three critical improvements are needed for any health reform bill to be effective in rural America. The commonsense, low-cost amendments can be found here.