Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA)—a dangerous and irresponsible piece of legislation that puts the health of moms and babies at risk. Under the AHCA, millions of hard-working families stand to lose the guaranteed health benefits that are critical to ensuring that their children get a strong start to life.
With this bill, Congress will force many women to pay more out-of-pocket to get the care that they need before, during and after pregnancy, putting themselves and their babies at risk for serious medical complications. Millions of people with pre-existing conditions—which could include pregnancy itself—will no longer be guaranteed affordable coverage to meet their needs. In addition, the AHCA also takes us back to days when women can be denied coverage or charged a lot more for health insurance just for being of child-bearing age.
It is deeply troubling that the AHCA includes severe cuts to Medicaid and CHIP, which play a critical role in providing health insurance to low-income families. Almost half of all children under age 6 in America rely on these programs for health coverage. Because the AHCA cuts billions of dollars from Medicaid and weakens the program, Congress has voted to eliminate coverage for millions of low-income children and their families.
As this bill now heads to the Senate, 1,000 Days urges Senators to vigorously oppose this proposal and instead focus on building a healthcare system that ensures all mothers, babies and toddlers in America have the care they need to thrive.