During the early morning hours of July 28, the U.S. Senate narrowly rejected the most recent proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA), known as the “skinny repeal.” McCain (R-Arizona), who was recently diagnosed with brain cancer, casted the deciding vote.
U.S. Pain was among many health and patient organizations that opposed the proposed reform, including: the American Medical Association; the American Public Health Association; American Hospital Association; AARP; the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network; and the National Organization for Rare Disorders.
“While the ACA isn’t perfect, we believe it was a step in the right direction for people with pre-existing conditions, including chronic pain,” says president and founder of U.S. Pain Foundation, Paul Gileno. “We need to build upon its successes and address its weaknesses — not undo the progress that has been made.”
U.S. Pain Foundation has been tracking the progress of the repeal and replace movement, creating online engagement opportunities for its volunteers to email their members of Congress. Some advocates have taken a more active role, like, senior advocate Wendy Berggren Foster. Berggren Foster, who lives with multiple health conditions, spoke out about the consequences of repealing the ACA at a town hall meeting hosted by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Connecticut) in New London, CT, on July 14.
“It was important to me to share my experiences,” says Foster. “Being disabled, I receive Medicare and Medicaid. The repeal would mean that I would lose my Medicaid, and with that, the help I receive for paying for my medical expenses and treatments.”
To read U.S. Pain’s full press release on the failure of the ACA repeal effort, click here.