U.S. Supreme Court makes historic 7-2 decision upholding the ACA
After seven months, the United States Supreme Court (SCOTUS) issued a 7-2 decision finding the California vs. Texas lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to be without standing this morning. This is now the third time SCOTUS has upheld the ACA as the law of the land.
SCOTUS heard oral arguments on the California vs. Texas case on November 10, 2020. Healthcare advocates and ACA proponents have been anxiously waiting for a ruling to come down ever since – and justly so. The coverage of millions of Americans depends on the ACA.
“The Affordable Care Act will remain the law of the land! Today’s U.S. Supreme Court opinion upholding the ACA in its entirety is both a relief and a breath of renewed energy in the fight for affordable and accessible healthcare for every Kentuckian,” said Emily Beauregard, Executive Director of Kentucky Voices for Health. “Instead of trying to take healthcare away from people, it’s time for our policymakers to build on the ACA’s successes and reimagine a healthcare system that is truly equitable so that every Kentuckian can thrive. We should start by permanently lowering premiums and reducing deductibles, copayments, and prescription drug costs for everyone.“
- More than 490,000 Kentucky adults and 52,000 children have gained coverage.
- 1.8 million Kentuckians, and 135 million individuals nationwide, with preexisting conditions cannot be denied healthcare coverage or charged more for their coverage.
- Kentucky receives a minimum of $4.3 billion dollars in federal funding each year.
- Kentucky hospitals receive a minimum of $1.7 billion dollars in revenue annually.
- 2.3 million adult children under the age of 26 will be able to stay on their parents’ insurance nationwide.
- The Medicare “donut hole” is closed for nearly 12 million senior Americans.
- More than 80,000 Kentuckians and over 9 million Americans receive premium subsidies and discounts on out of pocket costs from the Marketplace.
“Perhaps most critically, the ACA is the only law that protects people with pre-existing health conditions like cancer, diabetes, or a behavioral health disorder from being denied coverage by insurance companies or forced to pay higher premiums,” said Dr. Sheila Schuster, Board Chair of Kentucky Voices for Health. “With COVID-19 now also considered a pre-existing condition—and the spread of infectious variants on the rise—we need the ACA more than ever to safeguard ourselves, our families and our neighbors against health catastrophes and financial ruin.”
Because of the ACA, insurers are also banned from:
- Discriminating against women and older adults by charging them more for their health insurance;
- Imposing annual lifetime caps on coverage;
- Denying essential health benefits, like prescription drugs and maternity care.
“There is still work to be done in the fight for more affordable, accessible, and high quality healthcare for all, but thanks to the ACA, Kentucky’s uninsured rate is less than 8% and we have new options to get even more people covered,” said Cara Stewart, Director of Policy Advocacy for Kentucky Voices for Health. “There’s no better time to shop on healthcare.gov. Four out of five Kentuckians can find a healthcare plan for $10 or less per month after premium tax credits, and more than half will be able to find a Silver plan with a $0 premium.”
The current Special Enrollment Period (SEP) ends on August 15th. Kentuckians should explore Marketplace options and get affordable healthcare today at healthcare.gov. With the support of kynectors, Kentuckians can find free, local help to help them through the enrollment process by visiting kynect.ky.gov or calling 855.306.8959.