Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, has decided to postpone a vote on Republicans’ legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, after concluding he does not have the votes to pass the bill this week before the chamber goes on recess for the 4th of July holiday.
Several large patient and hospital groups, including the AARP and American Medical Association, have expressed skepticism about the draft legislation when it was first released last week in the Senate, but ramped up their opposition to the bill after the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) presented its formal analysis on Monday. The CBO report estimates that over the next 10 years, 22 million Americans would end up uninsured under the Senate plan as compared to trajectories under current law. The difference was largely a result of deep cuts to Medicaid within the proposal, as well as smaller subsidies in the form of tax credits to help people purchase insurance on the individual market.
In addition, the CBO outlined ways in which some of the sickest and most vulnerable Americans could be subject to changes in regulations that could dramatically increase out of pocket costs.
Many groups seemed to breathe a momentary sigh of relief when leadership announced any vote would be delayed. Samantha McGovern works closely with March of Dimes, one of the many health care groups that came out against the bill. March of Dimes works specifically on prenatal health, infant mortality, and care for premature babies.
McGovern’s daughter Josephine was born premature at 24 weeks in 2016 in northern Virginia. As a result of all of the complications with the development of her lungs, Josephine had to be hospitalized for over a year — 407 days, to be exact.
McGovern and her husband both have steady incomes and robust health insurance, which he receives for their family through his job with the federal government. Still, McGovern worries about the possibility…