For Immediate Release
March 20, 2017
Beth Harrison, Hamilton Strategies, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com, or Deborah Hamilton, 215.815.7716, 610.584.1096, ext. 102
Americans Are Counting on Republicans to Keep Their Obamacare Repeal Promise
Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom in D.C. This Week to Tell Congress How to Restore Health Freedom and Affordability
ST. PAUL, Minn.—Sen. Lindsey Graham said last week that if lawmakers can’t come to an agreement on the proposed American Health Care Act, then the Trump administration should drop the effort, let the current health care system collapse and see if Democrats would then agree to help replace it, reported Politico.
That’s what it may take, says Twila Brase, president and co-founder of Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF, www.cchfreedom.org), a national health freedom and patient advocacy organization, which has long called for the full repeal of Obamacare.
This week—March 23—marks the seventh anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, the law that made health insurance unaffordable and medical care less accessible.
Brase recently wrote a column for The Hill, stating that seven years is too long for a law that has severely damaged health care, as well as emptied the pockets of patients and tied the hands of doctors.
“Republicans on the campaign trail promised to repeal the law, and Americans are counting on them to stick to their promise,” Brase wrote for The Hill. “So why doesn’t GOP leadership’s proposed American Health Care Act fully repeal Obamacare? Republican Congressman Justin Amash rightly called it ‘Obamacare 2.0.’
“Voters angry over Obamacare have given Republicans control of Congress, control of state legislatures, and new governorships over the last three elections,” she continued. “During the 2016 election, conservative activists and Americans of every political stripe hurt by Obamacare’s high costs, narrow networks and limited choices used their ballots to paint America’s political map an unmistakable Republican red. Is Republican leadership colorblind?”
Brase added that Republicans are in charge today because President Obama misled Americans about the Affordable Care Act. Despite telling them, “If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor,” they lost their doctor. And despite promising them that if they liked their health plan they could keep their health plan, their plans disappeared. The law actually outlaws the most affordable insurance policies—major medical, catastrophic, indemnity coverage—except for those under the age of 30.
“Americans expect decisive action,” Brase wrote. “President Trump is ready to sign a bill to repeal Obamacare. It could be the same repeal bill Republicans sent to Obama in 2015. So why is GOP leadership offering a non-repeal replacement bill that looks and feels like Obamacare? … This is President Trump’s moment to shine. His ‘art of the deal’ skills can ensure that the GOP promise of repeal becomes the GOP reality of repeal. Only with repeal can we begin making health care great again in America.”
This week, Brase arrived in Washington, D.C. to meet with lawmakers about the GOP plan as well as other important health care issues. For the visit, CCHF prepared a document for members of Congress and the administration, outlining what the health freedom organization wants to see as health care reform moves forward.
Beyond repeal of Obamacare, concepts in the document titled “CONGRESS CAN: Restore Healthcare Freedom & Affordability,” include:
- Restore Affordability—The high-cost of health insurance and medical delivery today are a result of heavy third-party involvement in every medical decision.
- End Pre-Existing Conditions—Pre-existing conditions are typically acquired when a child with a condition ages out of a family policy or an employee with a condition loses employer coverage, sometimes because the employee cannot work due to the health condition.
- Set Medicare Recipients Free—The Clinton administration imposed a Social Security rule in 1997 without public notice or comment. In 2008, a lawsuit, including plaintiff Dick Armey who wanted to keep his insurance, was filed. SCOTUS refused to hear the case in January 2013.
- Restore Catastrophic Coverage—Health plans are an aberration pushed by Ted Kennedy (HMO Act of 1973). SCOTUS in Pegram vs Hedrich said Congress’ purpose was to ration health care.
- Expand Competition to Decrease Cost—Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare, the EHR mandate and MACRA are leading to fewer choices and higher prices in large cities and small communities. Many doctors are leaving medicine to avoid burnout and the loss of revenue.
- Expand Charity—Charity is less expensive and easier to provide than care through the burdensome, poorly reimbursed Medicaid program. Many doctors refuse new Medicare and Medicaid patients. To cover costs, the Mayo Clinic is now giving the privately-insured preference over patients on Medicare and Medicaid. Charitable medical services provide care to the truly needy, often bringing joy to the doctor and gratitude from the patient. There will always be a need for charity, sometimes even for the insured when care is denied.
- Reduce Regulatory Burden—Under Obama, 226 new major regulations were issued at cost of $108 billion per year—81,611 pages in 2015 alone. The Code of Federal Regulations was 178,277 pages at the end of 2015, compared to 71,224 pages in 1975. In 2000, Medicare had 111,000 pages of regulations. Obamacare has 40,000 pages of regulations and guidance documents.
Brase also shares CCHF’s “5C Solution,” which aligns with the group’s suggested actions:
- Cash for care
- Catastrophic Coverage
- Compassionate Care
CCHF has launched The Wedge of Health Freedom (www.JointheWedge.com) to transform the entire health care system back to freedom and restore simplicity, affordability and confidentiality. Nearly 200 Wedge practices, where patients can find affordable, patient-centered care, are located in 44 states and listed online.
CCHF is a national patient-centered health freedom organization existing to protect health care choices, individualized patient care, and medical and genetic privacy rights. For more information about CCHF, visit www.cchfreedom.org, its Facebook page or its Twitter feed @CCHFreedom. Also view the media page for CCHF here. For more about The Wedge of Health Freedom, visit www.JointheWedge.com, The Wedge Facebook page or follow The Wedge on Twitter @wedgeoffreedom.
To interview CCHF’s Twila Brase, contact Beth Harrison at 610-584-1096 x104, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com or Deborah Hamilton at 215-815-7716 or 610-584-1096 x102.