RELEASE: Hear the Nine: Local Decatur Story Among Three Released by CAP Highlighting Stakes in King v. Burwell Supreme Court Case
HearTheNine.org highlights how a Supreme Court ruling against the Affordable Care Act would have real-life impacts on Americans across the country.
Washington, D.C. — With nine Supreme Court justices holding the fate of millions of Americans’ access to affordable health care in their hands, the Center for American Progress is releasing three more stories in its Hear the Nine campaign today, including that of Julie and Danny T. of Decatur, who are saving hundreds of dollars each month on insurance under the Affordable Care Act, or ACA. Today’s stories are part of a month-long effort to highlight nine personal stories showing the stakes for the Court—one for each justice. This week’s stories from Florida, Georgia, and Ohio show how the case would hit people such as Julie and Danny, who found an affordable health care plan under the ACA after years of paying hundreds of dollars for subpar insurance and hoping they would stay healthy. All of the stories, including Julie and Danny’s, can be found at HearTheNine.org.
“If I didn’t have my new health insurance plan, those specialist appointments probably would have put us in bankruptcy,” Julie said. “I had MRIs and saw so many specialists, it would have cost us thousands. It really gave me peace of mind to know that I can care for my health in an affordable way.”
Conservatives have been trying for years to undermine and repeal the Affordable Care Act. Since they have been unable to do it legislatively, they “recruited [the Supreme Court] into the front lines of a partisan war.” A decision in favor of the plaintiffs would have devastating consequences for the nation’s health care system. Millions of Americans have signed up for and are benefiting from health care under the Affordable Care Act, from saving money on premiums and care to simply having access they didn’t have before. In many cases, the Affordable Care Act has saved lives.
“Recent media scrutiny around the King v. Burwell case is showing the political nature of this lawsuit and conservatives’ focus on taking health care away from millions of Americans,” said Michele Jawando, Vice President for Legal Progress at the Center for American Progress. “Five years after the ACA became law, conservatives are still fighting to prevent access to affordable health care, but now their actions don’t have theoretical situations. A Supreme Court ruling against the Affordable Care Act would throw our health care system into disarray, and the people who would be punished are the ones who can afford it the least.”
Unlike two years ago, when the Supreme Court ruled before the marketplaces were in effect, the Court’s decision on King v. Burwell will have immediate real-world consequences. More than 9 million people have already signed up or re-enrolled in the current open enrollment period, and millions more have benefitted from Medicaid expansion in their states. Through King v. Burwell, conservative opposition to the Affordable Care Act is attempting to undermine the law through a key clause that clearly states that tax credits for insurance will be available across all 50 states for low-income Americans. Last week, CAP released the first three of the nine stories, and three more will be highlighted next week alongside videos and facts about the case at HearTheNine.org.
- In just one year, the ACA has reduced the number of uninsured Americans by about 10 million, while millions have signed up for coverage through the marketplace.
- Last year, nearly 7 in 10 people who enrolled in the marketplaces selected a plan that cost $100 or less per month, after factoring in tax credits.
- Americans are getting better coverage than before with access to preventive services such as vaccines, cancer screenings, and yearly wellness visits with no out-of-pocket costs. And, as many stories have shown, insurance companies are no longer allowed to deny or drop anyone from coverage because of a pre-existing condition.
Julie and Danny’s story:
Julie and Danny T. of Decatur, Georgia, started their own business 10 years ago. Prior to signing up for the Affordable Care Act, the couple had a very basic policy with a $6,000 deductible and a payment of around $400 per month. They used this plan to cover an annual physical exam but hoped and prayed that they would stay healthy. After breaking her foot, Julie was rushed to the emergency room—a trip that cost her $1,700. “Money is tight, and we struggle as it is. Something as simple as walking around the block could end up costing us thousands.” In 2014, Julie and Danny were able to sign up for the Affordable Care Act using the marketplace, where the couple found a plan with smaller deductibles, improved coverage, and tax credits that brought their plan down to only $100 per month. Later that year, Julie started experiencing constant pain. After visits to a dozen different specialists, she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis—a disorder that will stay with her for the rest of her life. “If I didn’t have my new health insurance plan, those specialist appointments probably would have put us in bankruptcy,” Julie said. “I had MRIs and saw so many specialists, it would have cost us thousands. It really gave me peace of mind to know that I can care for my health in an affordable way.”
For more information, contact Benton Strong at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202.481.8142.