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Tonko Co-Sponsors Bill to Lower Healthcare Costs, Safeguard Pre-existing Conditions

New legislation will bring down costs, strengthen protections, reverse GOP healthcare sabotage

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Washington, March 26, 2019 | comments

WASHINGTON—Congressman Paul Tonko cosponsored sweeping new health care legislation today that will lower New Yorkers’ health insurance premiums, crack down on junk health insurance plans, strengthen protections for people with pre-existing conditions, and reverse the Trump Administration’s health care sabotage. The Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care Affordable Act was introduced the day after the Trump Administration asked a federal court to strike down the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with pre-existing conditions along with every other part of the health law.

“From day one, our Democratic Majority in the House has been fighting against attacks on healthcare that would deny people with pre-existing conditions and undermine affordable access,” said Rep. Tonko. “We are offering a strong response today with this new legislation to lower health costs and prescription drug prices for all Americans and reverse the campaign of sabotage by the White House and Congressional Republicans. The Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care Affordable Act is an important step forward for Democrats to deliver on our promise of protecting individuals with pre-existing conditions and lowering health costs for the American people.”

The Protecting Pre-Existing Conditions & Making Health Care More Affordable Act of 2019:

Lower health insurance premiums with strengthened and expanded affordability assistance

  • Strengthening tax credits in the Marketplace to lower Americans’ health insurance premiums and allows more middle-class individuals and families to qualify for subsidies;
  • Ensuring that families who don’t have an offer of affordable coverage from an employer can still qualify for subsidies in the Marketplace; and,
  • Providing funding for reinsurance, to help with high cost claims, improve Marketplace stability, and prevent the Trump Administration’s sabotage from raising premiums.

Strengthen protections for people with pre-existing conditions

  • Curtailing the Trump Administration’s efforts to give states waivers to undermine protections for people with pre-existing conditions and weaken standards for essential health benefits, which would leave consumers with less comprehensive plans that do not cover needed services, such as prescription drugs, maternity care, and substance use disorder treatment.

Stop insurance companies from selling junk health insurance plans

  • Stopping the Trump Administration’s efforts to push Americans into junk health insurance plans that do not provide coverage for essential medical treatments and drugs, and that are allowed to discriminate against people with pre-existing medical conditions.

Reverse the GOP’s health care sabotage that has needlessly driven up premiums and uninsured rates, and empower states to innovate and invest in enrolling more people in affordable health coverage

  • Reversing the Trump Administration’s sabotage by requiring open enrollment outreach, education, and funding for navigators;
  • Investing in state efforts to conduct outreach to increase enrollment, educate consumers of their rights, and help individuals navigate the health insurance system;
  • Empowering states to implement new approaches to increasing enrollment and allows states to set up their own Marketplaces; and
  • Holding the Administration accountable for its use of federal dollars dedicated to increasing enrollment, outreach and running the federal exchange.

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Contact Paul

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Washington D.C. Office

2369 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
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Albany, NY 12210
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Schenectady, NY 12305
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Amsterdam, NY 12010
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(518) 843-8874