As Healthy Michigan Touted As ACA Success Story, John James’ Dangerous Health Care Positions Would Increase Cost of Care and Gut Protections for Michiganders

Washington Post: “The ACA is Making Some Americans Healthier — and Less Likely to Die.” 

James Called the Health Care Law a “Monstrosity” and Vowed to Repeal It As Senator 

The Washington Post reported this week on the mounting evidence that the Affordable Care Act “has saved lives,” citing Healthy Michigan as a clear example of the law’s success in improving and expanding access to care. But Michigan’s progress would be reversed if failed Republican Senate candidate John James had his way. James infamously tried to delete a video of him calling the health care law a “monstrosity” while vowing to repeal it as Senator. James has also voiced his 2000% support for President Trump, who is currently overseeing a GOP lawsuit that poses “the most immediate threat” to the law. Washington Republicans have also “vowed to try again” to repeal the health law after the 2020 election, which would gut protections for Michiganders with pre-existing conditions.

James’ positions would be disastrous for Michiganders who have access to better care under the Healthy Michigan expansion. According to the report, studies show that Healthy Michigan led to “fewer complications” in heart surgeries and improved diagnosis rates for patients suffering from chronic diseases. One in three women who joined Healthy Michigan said it made it easier to access birth control. 

“John James’ political crusade to repeal the Affordable Care Act would mean higher health care costs for families across our state and put Michiganders with pre-existing conditions at risk again of being discriminated against by insurance companies,” said MDP Spokesperson Alex Japko. “John James’ 2000% support for Donald Trump and his refusal to speak out against the GOP lawsuit to dismantle the health care law means he would join Washington Republicans in their efforts to dismantle a law that has saved lives here in Michigan.” 

Washington Post: With the Affordable Care Act’s future in doubt, evidence grows that it has saved lives

By Amy Goldstein September 30, 2019

Key Points:

  • Poor people in Michigan with asthma and diabetes were admitted to the hospital less often after they joined Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. More than 25,000 Ohio smokers got help through the state’s Medicaid expansion that led them to quit. And around the country, patients with advanced kidney disease who went on dialysis were more likely to be alive a year later if they lived in a Medicaid-expansion state.
     
  • Such findings are part of an emerging mosaic of evidence that, nearly a decade after it became one of the most polarizing health-care laws in U.S. history, the ACA is making some Americans healthier — and less likely to die.
     
  • President Trump has dismantled as much of the law as his administration can, by expanding the availability of skimpy, inexpensive health plans that skirt ACA rules, for example, and slashing federal aid to help people sign up for coverage through ACA insurance marketplaces.
  • Michigan has emerged as a hub for understanding the ACA’s effects on health because University of Michigan researchers have been rigorously evaluating the Healthy Michigan Plan, as the state calls its Medicaid expansion covering about 650,000 people.
  • One 2017 study compared heart surgery patients in Michigan and Virginia, which had not yet expanded Medicaid at the time. It found that those who had cardiac bypasses or valve operations in Michigan had fewer complications afterward than similar people in Virginia, where more were uninsured.
  • One in three Michigan women said that, after joining Medicaid, they could more easily get birth control. And four in 10 people in Healthy Michigan with a chronic health condition — such as high blood pressure, a mood disorder or chronic lung disease — learned of it only after getting the coverage, according to survey results published last month.
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