Maloney Votes to Protect Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions

May 9, 2019
Press Release
House Passes Bill to Reverse Trump Rule that Allows Insurance Companies to Deny Coverage to People with Pre-Existing Conditions

WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), today voted to pass H.R. 986, the Protecting Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions Act, to block the Trump Administration’s dangerous October 2018 guidance that gives states the ability to weaken the Affordable Care Act’s critical protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions. The Congresswoman issued the following statement after the vote.

“In the wealthiest, most industrialized nation in the world, pre-existing conditions cannot be a prescription for bankruptcy. While President Trump is trying to make it legal to discriminate against Americans with pre-existing conditions, I was proud to vote to keep protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions by passing H.R.986. Healthcare is not a privilege, it is a human right and our nation needs to act like it.”

There are 8,398,900 New Yorkers living with pre-existing conditions.

BACKGROUND

On October 22, 2018, the Trump Administration issued the new guidance allowing states to promote insurance plans that discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions and do not cover essential benefits.  A coalition of 29 leading patient and health care advocacy groups, including the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association, has expressed strong opposition to the Administration’s guidance, stating that, “This dangerous action could take us back to the days when people with pre-existing conditions were openly discriminated against and blatantly denied access to lifesaving care.”

The Administration’s guidance undermines the stability of the health care market and allows states to promote junk so-called “short-term, limited-duration” insurance options that directly discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions.  Unlike ACA plans, these junk plans can eliminate coverage of pre-existing conditions, charge premiums based on health status, or reject patients altogether.  The Administration’s guidance even goes so far as to allow states to use federal taxpayer dollars to subsidize the purchase of these junk plans.

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