Senate Health Care Bill Will Not Protect Americans' Health

For Immediate Release
Cindy Hoffman: 202 524 5330
choffman@ywca.org

June 15,2017

Statement by Casey Harden, Interim CEO of YWCA USA

"The Senate leadership appears to be following in the footsteps of the House of Representatives in their shocking disregard for the health of millions of Americans.

"If passed into law, this bill will undermine access to the full range of essential health benefits currently provided by the Affordable Care Act. It will have a particularly drastic impact on women who rely on Medicaid for mammograms, cervical cancer screenings, domestic violence screenings, pregnancy and childbirth coverage, and more. Shifting Medicaid to a per capita block grant, as proposed in the Senate bill, will lead to increased costs for states and a decrease in access to care for millions of Americans. Moreover, regardless of whether it happens quickly or more slowly, eliminating the Medicaid expansion means millions of Americans will lose health coverage. By defunding Planned Parenthood for any length of time, the bill reduces access to safe, affordable health care for millions of women. This is not health care reform, this is health care denial.

"Women and girls of all economic means need access to affordable and accessible health care including essential health benefits like preventive care, a full range of reproductive health services, a well-funded Medicaid program and protections and access to health care for survivors of domestic violence.

"The Senate needs to have an open debate on this bill with time for members to examine it in full before a vote and for constituents to understand its impacts and voice their opinions. Anything less is un-democratic.

"Changes to health care for Americans should provide improvements to our system of care that will help all of us lead healthier lives. At this point, this bill does just the opposite. The Senate needs to go back to the drawing board and provide a bill that is good for all Americans."

About YWCA USA

YWCA USA is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women, stand up for social justice, help families, and strengthen communities. We are one of the oldest and largest women's organizations in the nation, serving over 2 million women, girls, and their families each year. Learn more: www.ywca.org.