- Graham-Cassidy: It’s Just Worse
- Center for Medicare Advocacy and Medicare Rights Center Send Joint Letter to Congress Opposing Graham-Cassidy
- Center Submits Statement On SNF Requirements for Senate Aging Committee Hearing
Despite an enormous public outcry that eventually doomed this summer’s attempt at repealing the Affordable Care Act and decimating Medicaid, legislators seem to be lining up behind yet another bad bill.
In fact, the Graham-Cassidy bill is even worse than earlier rejected bills.
The Graham Cassidy bill:
- Permits states to waive rules on premium ratings – meaning no guaranteed protections against charging more for people with pre-existing conditions.
- Allows states to waive rules for “essential health benefits” – meaning no guaranteed coverage for services such as preventive care, maternity care, mental health care and pediatric services.
- Ends all current federal subsidies for purchasing insurance.
- Ends Medicaid expansion and caps Medicaid funding.
And, of course:
- Cause 32 million people to lose coverage – and likely more, because of even deeper funding cuts to the rest of the Medicaid program.
Don't let the Senate gut health care!
Contact your Senators and tell them to protect your care.
Graham-Cassidy Doesn't Pass the "Jimmy Kimmel Test"
Fight for a bill that does!
 Kaiser Family Foundation, “Compare Proposals to Replace the Affordable Care Act.” http://www.kff.org/interactive/proposals-to-replace-the-affordable-care-act/
 Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “Like Other ACA Repeal Bills, Cassidy_Graham Plan Would Dd Millions to Uninsured, Destabilize Individual Market.” https://www.cbpp.org/research/health/like-other-aca-repeal-bills-cassidy-graham-plan-would-add-millions-to-uninsured
On September 19, 2017, the Medicare Rights Center and the Center for Medicare Advocacy sent a letter to Senate leadership in opposition to the recently unveiled “Graham-Cassidy” bill. The letter voices both organizations’ deep concerns that the Graham-Cassidy bill, like its predecessors, would take away access to affordable health care for millions of Americans, especially older adults and people with disabilities. The bill is particularly destructive to the Medicaid program and puts long-term care and services, including nursing home care and the ability for people to stay in their homes, at risk through damaging per-capita caps. The letter urges the Senate to instead pursue bipartisan solutions to strengthen the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicaid, and Medicare through an open and transparent process.
The U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging held a hearing on "Disaster Preparedness and Response: The Special Needs of Older Americans" today. The hearing came on the heels of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which resulted in the deaths of at least nine nursing home residents in Florida. Chairman Collins began the hearing by acknowledging the tragic loss of life, and noting that there need to be concrete solutions.
The Senate Aging Committee invited Karen DeSalvo (Former Health Commissioner City of New Orleans), Kathryn Hyer (Professor/Director Policy Center School of Aging Studies/Florida Policy Exchange Center on Aging, University of South Florida), Paul Timmons Jr. (CEO/President Portlight Inclusive Disaster Strategies), and Jay Delaney (Fire Chief/Emergency Management Coordinator City of Wilkes-Barre – Bureau of Fire) to testify. All witnesses provided testimony on potential solutions they believed would create better outcomes. For example, Ms. DeSalvo urged greater implementation and enforcement of CMS's Emergency Preparedness Plan, as well as utilizing technology. Ms. Hyer encouraged nursing home administrators to do real emergency drills and make sure emergency plans are tested. Mr. Timmons labeled emergency preparedness a civil rights issue and called for the establishment of a National Center for Excellence in inclusive Disability and Aging Emergency Management. Finally, Mr. Delaney called for fully funding the national weather service and FEMA.
The Center for Medicare Advocacy submitted a statement for the record. We showed that, for more than 25 years, federal regulations have required nursing facilities to prepare for disasters and emergencies, including “extreme weather,” and that new regulations published in the Fall 2016 added more detailed requirements. A critical problem, however, is that the federal survey process rarely looks at facilities’ programs for disaster preparedness. Even when deficiencies are cited, they are not classified as serious enough to lead to the imposition of sanctions. The full statement, which includes the federal rules in at Attachment, is available at https://www.medicareadvocacy.org/disaster-preparedness-and-response-the-special-needs-of-older-americans.
For more information on the hearing, please see https://www.aging.senate.gov/hearings/disaster-preparedness-and-response-the-special-needs-of-older-americans.