More calls this week to “repeal” the new Affordable Care Act from those newly elected to positions of power. While it’s easy to say “repeal,” the politicians calling for such action are pretty vague when asked what this actually means.
I’m happy to help. Repeal would mean taking away several key protections for children that many parents I’ve spoken with are very happy to have right now. First, parents can now keep kids on their health insurance policies through age 26 no matter what. Especially in today’s economy, if a recent college graduate has to, for example, take a job without health insurance, this is a lifeline for them and their families.
Second, no longer can health insurance companies deny coverage to children because of pre-existing health conditions. This can mean the world to parents who have a child with a health problem like a heart condition who could never afford coverage before. Now their child can get health insurance easily and get the care he or she needs.
Third, now preventive care like check-ups, vaccines, and so on is covered without copays or deductibles. This only makes sense for most parents I speak to – they want to prevent health problems for their children before they get serious, and this is one of the main ways to accomplish that goal.
A few months ago, we sat down and talked with Michael Byrus, a college student whose family is happy to have these protections. Repeal means taking away coverage from families like Michael’s and having similar effects on hundreds of thousands of other children.
So parents, next time a politician talks about repealing the Affordable Care Act, ask them if they know how many protections that would take away from our children. And if they don’t, let’s let them know.