Leading into Mother’s Day, Ohio Women Speak Out Against Health Care Repeal

In advance of Mother’s Day, the Ohio Women’s Public Policy Network (WPPN) and policy and community leaders discussed the disproportionately harmful impact on women of the healthcare repeal bill, the American Health Care Act (AHCA). The speakers addressed how devastating reductions in insurance tax credits and subsidies, cuts to Medicaid and the elimination of the Medicaid expansion, gutting protections for people with pre-existing conditions, and hikes in premium costs would make health care unaffordable and inaccessible for millions of women and families, and would put women’s economic security at risk.

“Among other significant impacts for women and families under Trumpcare, women would essentially be treated as a pre-existing condition — simply being a woman would be a liability, allowing insurance companies to deny coverage or charge sky-high, unaffordable premiums,” said Janetta King of the Ohio Women’s Public Policy Network. “Anything less than a full rebuke of this bill in the Senate is unacceptable, an insult to women and a serious attack on women and our economic security.”

“Ohio has one of highest rates of infant mortality in the nation,” said Dr. Beth Liston, a pediatrician. “We know that access to pre-natal care and family planning service are vital to lowering our rate. If Congress bans Planned Parenthood as a Medicaid provider, more women will lose their babies before their first birthday.”

“The American Health Care Act is the worst bill for women’s health in a generation,” said Joanna Saul of Planned Parenthood.

“By helping low-income people purchase insurance and those living in or near poverty to access health care through Medicaid, The Affordable Care Act has been a remarkable demonstration of what public policy can do for public health and the well-being of Americans,” said Wendy Patton of Policy Matters Ohio. “The Republican healthcare repeal plan rolls this back — it would have devastating consequences for the nearly 40 million women across the country who rely on Medicaid.”

The news conference can be viewed here. An audio statement from King is attached to this message.

The AHCA passed the House of Representatives last week and is now being considered in the Senate. The Ohio Women’s Public Policy Network recently released a fact sheet on what’s at stake for women and families under the AHCA.

A new Quinnipiac University poll shows the backlash against the AHCA. The bill is only supported by 1 in 5 Americans – 21 percent – while 56 percent of people disapprove of the legislation. Among independents the margin is even greater at 18 percent who approve to 60 percent who disapprove.

The Ohio Women’s Public Policy Network is a coalition of over 25 advocacy organizations focused on promoting policies that create economic security for women and strengthen Ohio families. Using a collective voice that represents the women of our state, this network works to ensure that public policy reflects the true needs of women and families. For more information, visit www.womenspublicpolicynetwork.org.