STATEMENT: New Plan To Permanently and Comprehensively Close the Coverage Gap Advances Racial Justice, Must Be Part of Final Build Back Better Package
Washington, D.C. — The U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee unveiled the chairman’s proposal for the Build Back Better Act. The plan makes critical investments in the American people’s health, including by permanently and comprehensively closing the coverage gap in 12 states that have refused to implement the full expansion made possible under the Affordable Care Act. In response, Maura Calsyn, Vice President of Health Policy at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement:
For the better part of a century, progressives have fought to guarantee quality, affordable health care coverage for every American. By permanently and comprehensively closing the Medicaid coverage gap, the proposal released by Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) gets us one step closer to achieving that vision and realizing the full potential of the Affordable Care Act.
This plan would guarantee coverage beginning in 2022, help the most low-income uninsured people in our country, and advance racial equity in health care, as roughly 60 percent of the 2.2 million people in the coverage gap are Black, Latino, and other people of color. I commend Chairman Pallone for centering the health and well-being of our most vulnerable as Congress works to turn President Joe Biden’s Build Back Better agenda into law—and for giving these individuals the peace of mind that they deserve, that their health care won’t fall prey to the whims of a future Congress.
I call on the House and Senate to incorporate this proposal into the package that makes it to the president’s desk.
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