NAADAC Condemns House Passage of AHCA

NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals today released the following statement regarding the U.S. House of Representatives’ vote on the American Health Care Act:

"NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals denounces the U.S. House of Representatives’ passage of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) yesterday, repealing key provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and massively cutting the Medicaid program by $882 billion."

"Members of the House of Representatives who supported the American Health Care Act voted against their constituents with mental health and substance use disorders, who rely on the ACA and Medicaid for comprehensive health coverage, services, and supports that enable them to live full lives in the community.  We must call this what it is – an attack on the rights and lives of people with substance use disorders."

"Specifically, the AHCA passed by the House:

  • Cuts Medicaid benefits and shifts costs to states;
  • Ends Medicaid expansion;
  • Allows Americans with pre-existing conditions to be charged more;
  • Greatly weakens Mental Health and Addiction Parity;
  • Reduces subsidies on the individual market; and
  • Allows older Americans to be charged more."

"The plan that passed in the House yesterday is insufficient to keep people with substance use disorders insured or to support anyone with co-occurring disorders or complex medical needs.  If signed into law as currently written, this bill will result in people with substance use disorders losing health coverage in the private insurance market and Medicaid. AHCA gives states the ability to strip substance use disorders benefits from coverage plans in their state, making substance use disorders a pre-existing condition that can be charged more for. Coverage also becomes unaffordable as people with pre-existing conditions lose protections against higher premiums.  Those lucky enough to retain their coverage will find that some of the services they need – previously deemed essential health benefits – are no longer available."

"The AHCA shows dangerous disregard for the wellbeing of people with substance use disorders and their families and erases decades of progress.  NAADAC is deeply disappointed in the House of Representatives for passing such harmful legislation." 

"Now we turn to the Senate, our last line of defense.  We intend to work with Senators on both sides of the aisle to oppose this harmful legislation.  We continue to encourage mental health and SUD advocates across the country to reach out to their Senators to voice their concern about this bill."

______________________
Media Contact
Jessica Gleason
jgleason@naadac.org
703.741.7686 x 130

NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals, represents the professional interests of more than 95,000 addiction counselors, educators and other addiction-focused healthcare professionals in the United States, Canada, and abroad. NAADAC’s members are addiction counselors, educators, and other addiction-focused health care professionals, who specialize in addiction prevention, treatment, recovery support, and education. An important part of the healthcare continuum, NAADAC members, and its 47 state affiliates work to create healthier individuals, families and communities through prevention, intervention, quality treatment and recovery support.

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