Rep. Johnson Unveils Patient Protection & Affordable Care Enhancement Act
House Democrats Move to Strengthen ACA, While Trump Asks Supreme Court to Tear Law Down
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, one day before the Trump Administration is due to file a brief asking the Supreme Court to strike down the entirety of the Affordable Care Act, Rep. Hank Johnson (GA-04) unveiled House Democrats’ new legislation to build on the ACA to lower health costs and prescription drug prices: the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act.
“From Day One of the House Democratic Majority, we’ve been hard at work to defend and strengthen the Affordable Care Act in the face of President Trump’s relentless efforts to tear down the law and its protections for people with pre-existing conditions,” said Rep. Johnson. “We promised in our For The People agenda that we would take bold action to lower health costs and prescription drug prices, and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act does just that.”
The bill significantly increases the ACA’s affordability subsidies to be more generous and cover more middle-class families. For the first time, no person will have to pay more than 8.5 percent of their income for a benchmark silver plan in the ACA marketplaces, and many Americans will see their premiums cut in half or more:
• A family of four earning $40,000 would save nearly $1,600 in premiums each year.
• A 64-year-old earning $57,420 would save more than $8,700 in premiums each year.
• A single adult with income of $31,900 would see premiums cut in half.
• An adult earning $19,140 would see premiums cut to zero, saving $800 dollars a year.
The bill negotiates for lower prescription drug prices, so that Americans stop paying inflated prices for the same medicines that Big Pharma is selling for cheaper overseas.
The bill expands coverage, pressing Medicaid expansion hold-out states like Georgia with new carrots and sticks to adopt coverage for the 4.8 million Americans cruelly excluded from coverage, while restoring the outreach and advertising funding that the Trump Administration has slashed to prevent Americans from learning about the affordable health coverage available to them under the ACA.
The legislation combats inequity in health coverage faced by communities of color, expanding more affordable coverage to vulnerable populations and fighting the maternal mortality epidemic by requiring states to extend Medicaid or CHIP coverage to new mothers for a full year post-partum.
The bill cracks down on junk plans & strengthens protections for people with pre-existing conditions, reversing the Trump Administration’s expansion of junk health insurance plans that do not provide coverage for essential medical treatments and drugs. It also cracks down on plan and re allowed to discriminate against people with pre-existing medical conditions.
“I’m here to lower the cost of health care for Georgia families, and that work is even more important now during a pandemic,” said Rep. Johnson. “I call upon my Republican colleagues to join us in passing this bill and urge President Trump to drop the dangerous lawsuit to destroy the ACA in the middle of the coronavirus crisis.”
A fact sheet on the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act is available here.