Statement attributable to:
Jack Resneck Jr., M.D.
President, American Medical Association
“The AMA is alarmed by today’s deeply flawed court ruling in Texas that jeopardizes access to preventive health services guaranteed under federal health reform, including drugs preventing HIV transmission.
“A critical section of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) required insurers and health plans to cover dozens of preventive health services with no cost to patients—eliminating copays and deductibles for the early detection of potentially fatal medical conditions, including cancer, hypertension, diabetes, and sexually-transmitted infections. Millions of patients could lose first-dollar coverage for dozens of life-saving screenings and treatments. Preventive-care requirements that for ten years have enabled millions of Americans to improve their health could just go away as a result of this flawed ruling.
“Providing insurance coverage for screenings and interventions that prevent disease saves lives—period. Invalidating this provision jeopardizes tools physicians use every day to improve the health of our patients.
“And the burden of losing this first-dollar coverage will fall disproportionately on low-income and historically marginalized communities that are least able to afford it and are often at high risk of developing preventable medical conditions.
“Denying access to proven preventive care flies in the face of good policy, and the societal costs of establishing barriers to preventive services are immeasurable. Physicians know the inevitable result when courts interfere with insurance coverage of effective, proven interventions. Patients will be subjected to needless illness and preventable deaths. We strongly urge employers and insurers to maintain this first dollar coverage while legislative and judicial next steps are considered.”
Editor’s note: The AMA and leading medical organizations sounded the alarm about the consequences of this potential ruling in a statement published in July 2022. An AMA Viewpoint on the importance of the ACA’s preventive care provisions was published in September 2022.
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