With the vote for the GOP’s latest ObamaCare Repeal bill, being referred to as the Graham-Cassidy legislation, set to hit the Senate floor for a vote sometime next week, there has been an ongoing debate as to if and how it actually improves upon the current healthcare situation in this country. The GOP is pushing it, saying that it will ultimately reduce costs, but Democrats emphasize the fact that it will literally push millions of Americans off of health insurance altogether.
After several previous failed attempts by the Republican House and Senate to come up with a way to “repeal and replace” Obamacare, this is seen as a last ditch effort, prior to the September 30 deadline. After September 30, the Senate will no longer be able to pass a healthcare bill with just a majority of the votes.
Yesterday, the Board of Directors of the National Association of Medicaid Directors (NAMD), which includes bipartisan medical directors from all 50 states in the United States, released a letter addressing congress, and encouraging them not to support the Graham-Cassidy bill.
The letter, which can be seen in its entirety here, outlined three important points as to how approving this legislation will ultimately hurt our country.
“Graham-Cassidy would completely restructure the Medicaid program’s financing, which by itself is three percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product and 25 percent of the average state budget,” the letter read. “Like BCRA, the legislation would convert the traditional Medicaid program into a per-capita cap financing system. All states will be impacted by this change, regardless of their decisions to leverage the Medicaid expansion option under the ACA. It would also incorporate Medicaid expansion funding and other ACA health funds into a block grant, made available to all states.”
The letter went on to emphasize how the legislation would require states to “operationalize” a block grant component which would have a January 1, 2020 deadline — a deadline which they say would be impossible for most states to meet. They then criticized the tactics in which the GOP is apparently rushing this bill through without appropriate statistical studies.
“Any effort of this magnitude needs thorough discussion, examination and analysis, and should not be rushed through without proper deliberation. The legislative proposal would not even have a full CBO score until after its scheduled passage, which should be the bare minimum required for beginning consideration. With only a few legislative days left for the entire process to conclude, there clearly is not sufficient time for policymakers, Governors, Medicaid Directors, or other critical stakeholders to engage in the thoughtful deliberation necessary to ensure successful long-term reforms.”
According to several sources, the Republicans are still one or two votes short of passing this bill in the Senate. Perhaps this latest letter, which has gone viral on social media, thanks to several celebrities who have been sharing it, will be the nail in the coffin. What do you think? Let us know in the comments section below.