March 26, 2017
Thank You NYSARA Activists: Your Efforts paid dividends in Preventing Trump/Ryancare’s passage
On Friday March 24, 2017 the American Health Care Act died a very unnatural death. The original bill that threatened to have up to 24 million Americans lose coverage, to raise prices for seniors, to give a $525 billion dollar tax break to the very richest Americans, to defund planned parenthood, subjected people to a 30% penalty if you had a 63 day lapse of coverage, phase out the Medicaid expansion and create “accessible” health care that was totally unaffordable (i.e.: you have access to a jaguar but don’t have the money to pay for it) When that was not bad enough the bill was amended to remove the essential benefits from insurance such as Outpatient care, Emergency room care, in hospital care, pregnancy, maternity and newborn care, mental health and substance abuse disorder services, prescription drugs, rehabilitative and habilitative services, preventive services, lab tests and pediatric services.
Add to that the special dispensation for New York embodied in the Collins/Faso amendment that prohibited the Medicaid cost sharing that the counties and NYS had, ostensibly to help the counties, and it created a bill that was only supported by 17% of Americans. The fact about the Collins/Faso amendment is that taxpayers would have still ended up paying, but it would increase the NYS budget hole by $2.3 billion per year. Millions of calls were made to US Representatives across the country. Tens of thousands of actions were taken by NYSARA activists to their congressional representatives. Those Included thousands of letters, many visits to congressional offices and to town halls, many actions in front of district offices and in some cases the homes of congress persons and outreach to our partners. NYSARA President Barry A. Kaufmann said “Never have I been more proud and encouraged by the activism, perseverance and hard work of our members. They were everywhere and were a large part of the effort to tell our congressional representatives that we are watching and we WILL hold them accountable for their actions. This is the only the beginning of the game. We must insure that Medicare, Medicaid and social Security are protected and that the issue of Retirement Security in our country is addressed.”