Utica Officials Take A Stand For ‘Care, Not Chaos’ As Millions Of Americans Face Sudden Loss In Healthcare

Repealing Affordable Care Act, gutting Medicaid and Medicare would create epic healthcare crisis

On Thursday, January 12, Mayor Robert Palmieri, members of the Utica Common Council, frontline healthcare workers, and members of Citizen Action of New York, ACR Health, and community leaders sounded the alarm about what’s at stake as Donald Trump and Congressional leaders move to eliminate affordable healthcare coverage, including vital Medicaid benefits and services.  Tens of millions of children, seniors and working adults including 84,723 residents in New York’s Congressional District 22 will be at risk for losing coverage. Utica area community leaders are calling on Congress to fix what is broken in the healthcare system, and leave in place provisions that have proven to help millions of Americans.  Mayor Palmieri and the Utica Common Council will be presenting resolutions urging Congress to not repeal the Affordable Care Act without a plan in place that will ensure access to healthcare for all.

Congressional leaders are rushing to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a move that would take away health insurance coverage for 30 million Americans, including 24,781 people in Oneida County alone.

According to Utica Mayor Robert Palmieri, “No law is perfect, but the Affordable Care Act has had a positive impact in people’s lives. While Congress should look at ways to improve the law, it would be irresponsible to simply repeal it without a plan to provide adequate protection for millions of Americans who depend on the Affordable Care Act for coverage.”

Here’s what’s at stake for Utica, if the ACA is repealed without an immediate replacement:

  1. Over 24,000 Oneida County residents will lose coverage by 2019.[Urban Institute]
  1. 84,723 residents in CD22 will be at risk for losing coverage. This includes thousands with Medicaid coverage, 20,259 with Essential Plan coverage, and 20,219 with private plans purchased through the ACA marketplace.
  1. 52 million Americans with pre-existing conditions could be denied health insurance.[Urban Institute]
  1. Rolling back Medicaid expansion and block-granting the program could put 72 million low income people, including children, seniors and people with disabilities, in danger of losing health coverage.[Families USA]
  1. Hospitals could lose more than $165 billion between 2018 and 2026, leading to an “unprecedented public health crisis.”[Federation of American Hospitals (FHA); American Hospital Association (AHA)]
  1. The estimated direct state budget impact of the repeal is $3.7 billion. New York’s counties have been able to use the additional federal Medicaid funding through the Affordable Care Act, which goes to directly to counties and helps to lower property taxes. A repeal of the Affordable Care Act would result in a total loss of $595 million in funding. The fiscal impact for Oneida County will be $4,169,425.

“The chaos that will result from an unnecessarily rushed healthcare repeal means families will be left wondering how to pay medical bills and hospitals will be forced to choose which services to close,” said Bill Phillips, Utica Common Councilor – 5thDistrict. “We need to send a message to Congress that we cannot have these cuts in our community.”

1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. We represent over 400,000 nurses and caregivers throughout Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Washington, D.C. and Florida. Our mission is to achieve quality care and good jobs for all.

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