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While that vote would take health insurance away from the 7.5 million who enrolled in private insurance, and the millions who are now on Medicaid or their parents' plans, it also would take away a lot of new, more affordable benefits for everyone with health insurance that don't get talked about as much. Adam Searing, Director of the North Carolina Justice Center’s Health Access Coalition, writes about those benefits, and what it means for his state.
How many people did this requirement help? In its first year, the ACA ensured that 71 million Americans (including two million North Carolinians) gained preventive service coverage. Here in North Carolina alone, 1.3 million women can now get affordable mammogram and ob-gyn annual exams. And because of the Affordable Care Act, all maternity care is now covered so women can stay healthy and have healthy babies. Believe it or not, women in North Carolina used to be charged hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year in extra premiums if they wanted the “luxury” of having their insurance plans cover pregnancy. In contrast, men were charged nothing extra for forgoing maternity coverage since they apparently had little to do with reproduction, at least in the eyes of the insurance industry.
What’s more, thanks to the ACA, as our babies in North Carolina grow, parents do not have to worry about their ability to pay for immunizations, regular check ups, and vision, hearing and speech tests.
Even seniors on Medicare had to pay for certain preventive services before the ACA. But not any more. Last year alone, 25.4 million seniors received at least one preventive service at no cost to them because of the Affordable Care Act.
Those are all things that Republicans keep on voting to repeal and things that they still haven't figured out a way to provide in an alternative plan, even though they've had four years to work on it.
Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Apr 10, 2014 at 12:14 PM PDT.