Cancer Expert On AHCA: "This Bill Will Make America Sicker"

President Trump invited GOP lawmakers - including House Speaker Paul Ryan - to the White House's Rose Garden to celebrate after the AHCA passed.

Pre-Existing Conditions

Let’s focus on that final point for now, as it’s likely to be the most controversial. Before the ACA became law, insurance companies could charge people a lot more for their insurance, or deny it to them outright, if they had a long-running medical issue of some kind. Now, it’s illegal to do so, but the AHCA wants to insidiously reverse that. Here’s a selection of just a few pre-existing conditions, at least one of which almost a third of adults under the age of 65 have:

  • Breast Cancer
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Coronary Heart Disease
  • A form of paralysis
  • Alzheimer’s/Dementia
  • Epilepsy
  • A transplanted organ
  • Transsexualism
  • Psychological disorders
  • Sexual assault
  • A cesarean section
  • Victim of domestic violence
  • Being pregnant

As has been rightly pointed out by many, many of these pre-existing conditions are those experienced by women, so the bill is inherently and ludicrously misogynistic.

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It’s extremely difficult to argue against the fact that this bill is a vicious assault on the less well-off, the elderly, and women. The AHCA, just as an example, essentially states that, if you report being sexually assaulted, or you are pregnant, you will be asked to pay more for your health insurance if you are allowed to keep it – a lot more, in fact.

“The present proposal would still increase costs, reduce coverage, and cut benefits, putting health, independence, and quality of life at risk for all of us as we age,” Nancy Lundebjerg, the Chief Executive Officer of the American Geriatric Society, said in a statement.

“It Will Make America Sicker”

One recent costing suggests that a 40-year-old with an average type of health insurance will end up having to pay $4,000 more per year if they have asthma, $5,500 extra for diabetes, $17,000 if they are pregnant, and up to $143,000 if they have an advanced form of cancer.

“The TrumpCare bill is not designed to make Americans healthier,” Dr. Jason Westin, an award-winning cancer research expert and assistant professor at the University of Texas, told IFLScience. “It is designed to cuts costs to give a massive tax cut for the richest Americans.”

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“As a doctor, I took an oath to first do no harm. This bill will do a lot of harm to a lot of people, and will make America sicker,” Westin added.

“I've seen first-hand the pain that is inflicted on good people with insurance problems. This bill will multiply those problems, not make them better. My patients all have pre-existing conditions, and they and millions more are very worried about what happens next to their healthcare.”

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