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AMA Statement on Senate Debate on Health System Reform

For immediate release:
Jul 26, 2017
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Statement attributed to:
David O. Barbe, M.D.
President, American Medical Association

“During consideration of proposals related to the Affordable Care Act, the American Medical Association urges Senators to consider the impact their votes will have on the health of all Americans. Their efforts must not increase the number of Americans without health insurance, further weaken the individual insurance market, undermine critical safety net programs, or make it harder for low and moderate income Americans to obtain quality, affordable health insurance.

“To date, the amendments proposed to repeal or replace the Affordable Care Act fail to meet these basic requirements and would harm vulnerable patients in every state.

“There has been considerable speculation regarding a so-called “skinny package” that would primarily eliminate penalties related to the individual and employer mandates and provide tax cuts to device manufacturers and the health insurance industry. Eliminating the mandate to obtain coverage only exacerbates the affordability problem that critics say they want to address. Instead, it leads to adverse selection that would increase premiums and destabilize the individual market. 

“We again urge the Senate to engage in a bipartisan process – through regular order – to address the shortcomings of the Affordable Care Act and achieve the goal of providing access to quality, affordable health care coverage to more Americans.”

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Media Contact:
Jack Deutsch
AMA Media & Editorial
202-789-7442
[email protected]

About the American Medical Association
The American Medical Association is the premier national organization providing timely, essential resources to empower physicians, residents and medical students to succeed at every phase of their medical lives. Physicians have entrusted the AMA to advance the art and science of medicine and the betterment of public health on behalf of patients for more than 170 years. For more information, visit ama-assn.org.

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