04.04.19

Rep. Kilmer Fights to Protect Washingtonians with Pre-Existing Conditions & Make Health Care More Affordable

Kilmer Supports Resolution Condemning the Administration’s Legal Campaign to Take Away Americans’ Health Care, Co-Sponsors the Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care More Affordable Act

Washington, D.C. – Yesterday, Representative Derek Kilmer (WA-06) voted in favor of H.Res. 271, a resolution condemning the Trump Administration’s recent federal court filing asking the courts not only to strike down protections for people with pre-existing conditions, but to eliminate every protection and benefit provided by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The resolution was adopted, 240-186.

Since its full implementation in 2014, the ACA has provided critical protections for the 130 million people in the U.S. with pre-existing conditions, including over 3 million people from the Evergreen State. 

In addition, Rep. Kilmer co-sponsored the Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care More Affordable Act (H.R. 1884), new health care legislation introduced last week to lower health insurance premiums, stop the Administration’s efforts to push Americans into short-term, limited duration health insurance plans that do not provide coverage for essential medical treatments, and strengthen protections for people with pre-existing conditions. 

“I’m proud to support this legislation to lower health care costs and expand health care access,” said Rep. Kilmer. “In the wake of the Administration’s court filing that pushes for the complete and total repeal of the Affordable Care Act, this bill is more critical than ever. I wasn’t in Congress when the ACA passed, and I don’t think the law is perfect. But the overall impact of the ACA has been undeniably positive; expanding coverage and securing critical protections for millions of Americans. Rather than unwinding the progress that’s been made, Congress should build on the success of the existing law by implementing this legislation. I will continue to fight for affordable health care for all Americans. I feel strongly that folks in DC should be working to make people’s lives better – not sabotaging the American health care system.”

The Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care More Affordable Act, which was introduced the day after the Administration asked a federal court to strike down the ACA, includes provisions that will:

Lower health insurance premiums with strengthened and expanded affordability assistance

  • Strengthening tax credits in the Marketplace to lower Americans’ health insurance premiums and allowing more middle-class individuals and families to qualify for subsidies;
  • Ensuring that families who don’t have an offer of affordable coverage from an employer can still qualify for subsidies in the Marketplace; and
  • Providing funding for reinsurance to help with high cost claims, improve Marketplace stability, and prevent the Administration’s sabotage from raising premiums.

Strengthen protections for people with pre-existing conditions

  • Curtailing the Administration’s efforts to give states waivers to undermine protections for people with pre-existing conditions and weaken standards for essential health benefits, which would leave consumers with less comprehensive plans that do not cover needed services, such as prescription drugs, maternity care, and substance use disorder treatment.

Stop insurance companies from selling short-term, limited duration insurance plans

  • Stopping the Administration’s efforts to push Americans into short-term, limited duration health insurance plans that do not provide coverage for essential medical treatments and drugs and plans that are allowed to discriminate against people with pre-existing medical conditions.

Reverse divisive action that has needlessly driven up premiums and uninsured rates, and empower states to innovate and invest in enrolling more people in affordable health coverage

  • Reversing the Administration’s damage by requiring open enrollment outreach, education, and funding for navigators;
  • Investing in state efforts to conduct outreach to increase enrollment, educate consumers of their rights, and help individuals navigate the health insurance system;
  • Empowering states to implement new approaches to increasing enrollment and allowing states to set up their own Marketplaces; and
  • Holding the Administration accountable for its use of federal dollars dedicated to increasing enrollment, outreach, and running the federal exchange.