Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Affordable Care Act is here to stay

By: Center for American Progress



The Decision:
· The Court voted 6-3 to hold that the Affordable Care Act’s tax credits are available in ALL states.
· The opinion was written by Chief Justice Roberts, who was joined by Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, Kagan, and Sotomayor.
· Justice Scalia dissented, joined by Justices Thomas and Alito.
·  The Court’s opinion was based on interpreting the law as written and did NOT rely on Chevron deference.

What it means in Plain English:
· The opinion is a VERY strong, definitive endorsement of the law.
· The legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act are OVER.
· The opinion concludes that there is only ONE proper interpretation based on the statute’s text, structure, and purpose.
· Only Congress, not a future Republican administration’s IRS, can change the law.

Key points:
· The Supreme Court has spoken – twice. The Affordable Care Act is the law of the land and it’s here to stay.
·  The Affordable Care Act is working and it’s here to stay. It’s time to stop refighting the battles of the past and time to start building on the success of providing health coverage to more than 16 million Americans and countless benefits and protections to more than 100 million other Americans.
·  It’s time for Republicans and their allies to accept reality. No more frivolous lawsuits. No more wasting time on dozens of pointless repeal votes. No more refusing to expand Medicaid. No more excuses, period.
· Republicans continue to treat the Supreme Court like an arm of the Republican Congress. We hope that in the future, the Court will not allow itself to be drawn into partisan political battles that threaten its legitimacy as an institution and the legacies of the Justices themselves.

The Affordable Care Act is working:
· More than 16 million Americans have health coverage, many for the first time, thanks to the ACA, including over 10 million consumers who are enrolled through the marketplaces.
· 85 percent of consumers who purchases coverage through the marketplace received a tax credit, with the average consumer receiving $272 each month to help them purchase quality, affordable coverage.
· This year, more than 80 percent of consumers using Healthcare.gov could purchase a plan for less than $100 a month or less after tax credits.
· The percentage of uninsured Americans has plummeted, thanks to the Affordable Care Act. According to Gallup, the uninsured rate is now 11.9 percent, a decrease of nearly 35 percent since the ACA’s major provisions went into effect.
· 81 percent of ACA enrollees report that they are satisfied with their plans.
· More than 60 percent of ACA enrollees say that they would not have been able to access or afford care without their ACA coverage.
· More than 100 million Americans who have preexisting conditions can never be denied coverage again, no matter where they get their insurance, thanks to the ACA.
· An estimated 55 million women are benefiting from preventive services coverage, including contraception, with no out-of-pocket costs. The ACA also made it illegal to charge women more just because of their gender, meaning that being a woman is no longer a pre-existing condition.
· 9.4 million seniors on Medicare have saved over $15 billion on prescription drugs since the law’s enactment, for an average savings of $1,598 per person.
· 2.4 million young people have been able to stay on their parents’ insurance until they turn 26.
· The cost of uncompensated care in hospitals was reduced last year by more than $7 billion, thanks to the ACA. If all states expanded Medicaid, it could be reduced by almost $9 billion next year.
· Since the first full year of the implementation of the ACA, we have seen the slowest growth in real per capita health care spending on record. Long-term spending estimates for federal health care spending have been reduced by hundreds of billions of dollars.

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