The Arc Responds to House Passage of The American Health Care Act: “Shows callous and dangerous disregard for the wellbeing of people with disabilities”

Washington, DC – The Arc released the following statement following the House of Representatives passage of the American Health Care Act (AHCA), with the addition of amendments that take the bill from bad to worse for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and their families:

“Members of the House of Representatives who supported the American Health Care Act voted against their constituents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. We won’t soon forget those who so willingly ignored the pleas of their constituents who rely on the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid for comprehensive health care coverage and long term services and supports that enable them to live full lives in the community. We must call this what it is – an attack on the rights and lives of people with disabilities.

“The federal government will be walking away from a more than 50 year partnership with states when it comes to Medicaid. Deep cuts and radical restructuring will decimate the Medicaid program. With an over $800 billion cut to Medicaid, states will face difficult choices about what people to cut from the program or what services to roll back. Optional services like home and community based services are likely to be cut. Lives will be lost when people are unable to access the health care and community supports they need.

“The plan that passed the House today is insufficient to keep people with disabilities insured or to support anyone with complex medical needs. If signed into law as currently written, this bill will result in people with disabilities and their family members losing health coverage in the private insurance market and in Medicaid. Coverage also becomes unaffordable as people with pre-existing conditions lose protections against higher premiums.   Those lucky enough to retain their coverage will find that some of the services they need – Essential Health Benefits – are no longer available.  And Medicaid funded long term supports and services, which help people live independently and be included in their communities, will be even scarcer as waiting lists for services will grow all across the country.  Some may end up living in nursing homes and institutions because community services are no longer available.

“The American Health Care Act shows callous and dangerous disregard for the wellbeing of people with disabilities and their families and erases decades of progress.  Now we turn to the Senate, our last line of defense. We intend to work with Senators on both sides of the aisle to oppose this harmful legislation. We continue to encourage disability advocates across the country to reach out to their Senators to voice their concern about this bill,” said Peter Berns, CEO, The Arc.

This week, The Arc released another video illustrating how Congress’ proposed changes to the ACA and Medicaid would negatively impact Americans with disabilities and their families. The video features an interview with Toby, Lindsay, and Calvin from Fairfax, VA. Calvin has Bilateral Fronto-Parietal Polymicrogyria and Cerebral Palsy and relies on multiple insurance plans to cover his medical and therapeutic treatments.

This video is the second in a series of videos The Arc will be releasing in the coming weeks, sharing the personal stories of people with disabilities and their families, and the impact of the ACA and Medicaid on their lives. The first video featured nine people who rely on the ACA and/or Medicaid, and each one has a personal message for Members of Congress and the Trump Administration.

5 thoughts on “The Arc Responds to House Passage of The American Health Care Act: “Shows callous and dangerous disregard for the wellbeing of people with disabilities”

  1. Since the party of conservatives as it relates to this bill on intellectually challenged people… we should ask congress to do another study.
    I propose that we see if there is a stark difference between parties; hence a profit for; or uneven distribution of benefits.
    Furthermore, I ask congress to study children and young adults with disability (challenged)… to see which groups retain said people in the family unit/home; and which people or groups thrust them upon society. At what age these people are cast away from families; and for what reasons. So we might all understand such. This is not a blame game here; so all evidence should be collected. It can become a blame game later. We have enough data to be able to conclude this investigation by the end of the calendar year.
    I suspect; that most younger children are taken care of by conservatives; and only a slight uptight in re-homing will be evident in children ranging from 0-5 years of age. I suspect that curve will begin to rise with age; but diverge as it relates to religious or non religious households. Or as it relates to left center or right leaning family units. I trust it will also change bases on demographics; being city or rural living. Also, family wealth would take a interesting change as well. Being the poor left would likely fair similarly as the entire conservative right of center perhaps.
    Take for example Obamacare. When writing these rules; the conservatives balked at the high costs within each state; and the impact on other programs… as the state would take on a higher share of funding as time went on. Thus they decided they would not participate. Yet… federal funding was used to broaden the programs. Yet the left and center was primarily funded; and the right was only paying into the program with fewer benefit draw downs at the federal level. It would be interesting to note; if the same draw down of benefits is taking place. Of interesting notes; the liberal states; are the ones going bankrupt; because of high minority populations receiving benefits on a generational basis. So how can we even the the playing field across all ethic lines. What we need to do it make sure; Hillary’s funding fiasco of decades; robbing peter to pay paul; is unwound. It you represent 6 percent of the population; and your sucking down 25 percent of the benefits with various programs; without being disabled… then that would be a problem. If the family is able to care for said people; yet they still decide to push them off onto society; should there not be some sort of penalty. They penalize family members going to college. Saying the means are there; so pay more. Why not use these same models. Also, FDR is regarded as one of the best presidents in American history; a democrat by nature… who started work benefit programs. Yet today, if one is told to work for benefits; they argue it is demeaning to the person or group. So perhaps a list of model approaches is in order; after calculating more data. We have AI computers; who can interact with data in real time. We no longer need human intelligence or time to collate data. We can now see what people are making in real time; and figure out what U6 is for example.
    News organizations and parties are now burning the data at both ends. For example; they’ll argue that certain people needs more benefits. Yet they instill laws based on privacy or other laws; so that data can’t be collected or shared. It is time to start having honest conversations about data collection; regardless of race creed or financial background.
    A couple years ago; I took an unemployed young female in the mid twenties who was balking about benefits. She had never really worked in her life. A smart healthy capable young white girl in poverty. She was making more than 35k a years. She had everything in life taken care of; from her phone to new appliances to gas for her cars. She had 3 newer cars; yet never worked (long story). She was given free everything. To include cosmetic surgery with state aid benefits. Which dumbfounded me. Yes when I looked at middle families; of two parents and a child or two. A family unit collected few benefits; they fared far worse. I say few; because they were collecting from a school program meant to help young children in school at taxpayers expense. The majority of parents would be using that same program except the wealthy. Yet the poor girl who does not want to work; would in time qualify for another dozen programs if Hillary had anything to do about it. Primarily because they hide the bulk of benefits and the data or truth. Or the myriad of programs that overlap. Which is a form of fraud upon the taxpayers. If the information was easily searchable; perhaps the taxpayers would lobby to cut certain programs; which would free up money at both the state and federal level. Money which could be spent in other area’s. This is where Mrs. Clinton excels; at finding money sitting around in working programs; and robbing them of funding; for poorly run programs that primarily benefit people who have access to a myriad of programs beyond what we can see. Half the population of America has made a career of gaming the system as a profession… instead of self sufficiency. As a country; this is being seen across the board by all members of society; and as a result; we are becoming less charitable as a whole… and becoming a debtor nation in the meantime. Instead of balking about data collection; the Federal Govt should open the floodgates to all data being collected; (for use) to the benefit of all in society. While weeding out professionals who game the system. It’s like all the fraud in the medical community. Well hello; you think patients and small game types know how to use all those codes. It’s the medical community that is ripping off the United States. Largely the doctors; and for profit of course. If we took back 90 percent of the false claims. Say by placing a camera to observe all interactions between doctors and patients. We have all that money to give in aid to support smaller hospitals. Instead; we’re killing the whole system. HIPPA was made primarily to protect companies; not patients. We have to do a better job at collecting data. I say we give the AI computers free reign on solving problems. Which reminds me of an AI problem of late. Then the NAACP balked saying the computers were racist and that we needed to change the data. This is the future of our country. If we keep burying our head; it will only get worse. Big data is upon us; it’s high time we used such data to help society. So we can better decide where the funding is truly needed. For example; the federal govt could supply certain birth control. I said certain. You’d not want to supply rubbers to any young male. But say IUD’s and some other insert types in the arm w/ hormones. Since the ladies want control of their own bodies and when they can conceive. Taking it out would have some govt controls. Like family planning. Also, we could tie the birth control to tax refunds to recoup the cost. Would 5 dollars a month be arduous for the freedom of choice; and when one conceives. I think not. But it’s not about control; it’s about greed and selfishness. Which is what we need to get a grip on in this country.

  2. Ah yes, moderation; the bane of a free society in thought. The first amendment rights the media keeps crying about; while they moderate other voices. Have to love the lefties.

  3. I need to help! I am a mom to 2 intellectually disabled children. I work at a Children’s Hospital for families of special needs children. I have and always will be the voice behind the disabled. I have traveled to Washington to speak on the importance of Medicaid. I will travel again! I work as a resource for families to help navigate this journey. How can I help other than emailing someone. We need faces attached to these emails!

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