In the middle of a pandemic, one of the most valuable things to a person is access to comprehensive and effective healthcare. In the United States, the primary way we have expanded such access is through a lifesaving piece of 2010 legislation called the Affordable Care Act (ACA), sometimes affectionately dubbed "Obamacare" after then-President Barack Obama. The ACA has successfully provided health insurance to upwards of 20 million Americans, making it invaluable — especially right now.
So what is one of the last things you might want to do as president during a pandemic? Oh yeah, take away people's health insurance. But since our current president is Donald Trump, of course that's exactly what he wants to do.
Sign the petition to demand that members of Trump's cabinet stand up and stop him from making this unspeakably cruel move!
Led by Donald Trump and his cronies, the Justice Department is urging the Supreme Court to completely invalidate the ACA. In addition to contesting specific subsections of the law that ensure universal coverage for all people, the Trump administration's filing declared that the entire ACA "must also fall."
Experts estimate that abolishing Obamacare would strip more than 23 million people of their health insurance. These numbers are particularly strong right now. More than 41 million people have filed for unemployment since mid-March, overwhelmingly due to pandemic-related lay-offs. Without jobs, these individuals no longer have access to healthcare. So turning to the ACA to purchase replacement plans has become essential in order to keep themselves covered and safe. In April and May, almost half a million people used the ACA to procure healthcare plans, which is a 46% increase compared with this time last year.
In other words: the need for healthcare has never been greater, and protecting Obamacare has never been more urgent.
Without insurance, if any of these 23 million people contract the novel coronavirus — and countless of them certainly will — they will have to pay for testing, treatment, and potential hospitalizations entirely out of their own pockets. Even worse, hospitals routinely overcharge patients without insurance at a rate approximately 300% higher than patients with insurance.
On top of that, the ACA also protects patients with pre-existing conditions, ensuring that they can't be turned away, discriminated against, or price-gouged because of having asthma, depression, heart disease, given birth, or more. Without the ACA, any one of us could be denied health insurance — and contracting COVID-19 could even be viewed as a new type of pre-existing condition.
Of all the callous, heartless things Trump and his administration could do right now, this has to be one of the worse. Sign the petition to help stop them now!