By Karmann Peters, NSSRH Executive Director
Last week the Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives passed a health insurance plan that has been called “cruel” and “out of touch”, not to mention they get lifelong health insurance as members of Congress – which means they are unfortunately making misinformed and cruel decisions for the rest of us.
Time.com reports that there are at least 50 Health Issues That Count as Pre-Existing Conditions, including pregnancy. And the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that although rape and sexual assault may not be on the list of pre-existing conditions, some survivors “could face higher costs” as well.
Many in Congress, and America at large, say that there is no war on women, but the House plan seems to paint an entirely different picture for many Americans including women, people of color, the LGBTQ community, and those on the margins who may have multiple “conditions”. At a time when many are unsure of whether or not they will be able to access (or afford) family planning clinics for birth control, abortion care, etc., let alone the potential increases of current/future health insurance costs, the level of insolence and aggression coming from the Republicans in the House is quite astounding (…they had a “party” in the Rose Garden after passing the bill through the House to celebrate their victory, this after some of the most cold-hearted members didn’t think the original bill was “cruel enough” to poor and struggling Americans). This is unacceptable.
Do the members of Congress forget that we pay their salary? That we vote them into office and we can vote them out? It seems that they are actually very aware, as many have been ghosting the members of their own communities who voted for them and have slipped out of town hall meetings in order to avoid addressing community concerns. It is up to every one of us to hold them accountable for their actions. We must continue to advocate for the expansion of health insurance coverage, we must speak out in support of our patients and our clinics, and we must stand up together to say ENOUGH!