Statement attributable to:
Ryan D. Mire, MD, MACP
WASHINGTON March 30, 2023 – The federal court ruling announced today against the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) requirements for coverage for preventive services will harm the health of Americans. Prior to today, under the ACA, health insurance plans have been required to include coverage at no cost to patients for preventive services recommended by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. These preventive services include cancer screenings, mental health screenings, heart disease and hypertension screenings, among other services. The benefits have proven extremely popular: one analysis estimates that 100 million people with private insurance received ACA-covered preventive services in 2018. Patients need access to health insurance, but more importantly, they need access to health insurance that actually covers the preventive services that keep them healthy. Subjecting patients to increased costs, or potentially doing away with coverage altogether for important preventive services means many of my patients may no longer be able to access the care they need which will result in worse health outcomes for countless Americans. The U.S. repeatedly ranks last in health outcomes compared to other industrialized countries; this ruling will only further widen that gap rather than focus on efforts to close it.
The American College of Physicians calls for this decision to be reversed before our patients begin losing access to preventive services. Instead of attacking the coverage that patients have, we should be looking for ways to bolster the ACA and increase access to care. With the increased subsidies for premiums for ACA plans, we have seen record enrollment over the last year. We should be looking for other ways to work toward universal coverage, rather than stripping away care from patients.
About the American College of Physicians
The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization in the United States with members in more than 145 countries worldwide. ACP membership includes 160,000 internal medicine physicians, related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. Follow ACP on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
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