Recently, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA), which would allow insurance companies to potentially charge people with type 1 diabetes (T1D) more money for coverage and would significantly cut Medicaid for many low-income people with T1D. On behalf of the 1.25 million Americans with this chronic disease and their families who rely on affordable, comprehensive health insurance, JDRF is deeply upset with this decision.
For many years, the T1D community had to battle with insurers that were allowed to deny coverage or charge significantly more to cover people with pre-existing conditions, and we do not want anyone to have to endure those battles again. As quality care becomes more expensive and less accessible, the health of people with T1D suffers.
The version of the AHCA that passed in the House could jeopardize the insurance coverage that people with T1D rely on to live healthy lives. Furthermore, it violates the principles for health reform JDRF established in January 2017, which include preserving protections for those with pre-existing conditions. As written, this legislation would give states the option to allow insurance companies in the individual insurance market to charge higher premiums based on a person’s health status. It would also encourage the use of high-risk insurance pools, which often charge patients with pre-existing conditions premiums 150 to 200 percent higher than typical coverage.
We are urging the entire T1D community to contact their Senators and tell them why people with pre-existing conditions should not have to pay more for their health insurance.
JDRF will spend the coming weeks working with Senators across the political spectrum to ensure any health reform legislation will protect people with pre-existing conditions and provide access to affordable, comprehensive coverage for everyone – including the T1D community.
For more information, read JDRF’s earlier statement opposing the AHCA.