As you have probably heard, the Senate version of the bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act is AWFUL. For people with a uterus, for people without one, for young people, for older people… the bill is an unabashed attack on health care and would hurt millions of people seeking affordable reproductive health care in Colorado and nationwide. Politicians are turning life-saving care into a political game. We’ve had enough.
The bill threatens reproductive health care in a multitude of ways. By slashing funding for the federal Medicaid program, it strips millions of people of the reproductive health care coverage they depend on and makes insurance less affordable for those who still have it. Under the Senate bill, it is estimated that 22 million more people nationally would be uninsured by 2026 and 15 million would be uninsured next year. Plus, it makes huge cuts in maternity care coverage - 13 million women would lose their coverage.
Moreover, the Senate bill singles out Planned Parenthood for “defunding” by blocking people with Medicaid coverage from accessing the important family planning and preventive services provided in Planned Parenthood health centers. It is clear that reproductive rights are specifically under attack, and low-income women and women-of-color risk losing the most. Across the Rocky Mountain 4 state region, there are currently 30,000 Medicaid patients who trust and rely on Planned Parenthood. Nationally, 13 million Medicaid patients rely on this care. That means 13 million people would lose their access to birth control, cancer screenings, STI testing and treatment… the list goes on.
Taking away Medicaid coverage for Planned Parenthood patients limits the options of where people go for care. This means that yet another decision would be taken away from women regarding when, where, and how they keep their bodies healthy. One in five women has used Planned Parenthood services in her lifetime because they know that Planned Parenthood provides safe, affordable, and comprehensive care – and their right to choose this compassionate care could be taken away.
Plus, for many people seeking reproductive health services, the only reproductive health clinics that exist in their region are Planned Parenthood clinics. More than half of Planned Parenthood health centers are in areas that already have a shortage in health professionals and are medically underserved. So, the bill would leave many people with no place at all to turn to for care, resulting in needless suffering. The Senate bill is, as former President Obama says, “mean,” and we couldn’t agree more.
We need to call out the Senate bill for what it is:
· A blatant attempt to take away health care of working families to benefit millionaires.
· An attack on women’s autonomy in making personal decisions like when and if to start a family.
· An attempt to disempower women and others they do not deem as worthy.
· Not the health care we need and deserve!
Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado is fighting back. Join us in speaking out against this bill by calling Senator Cory Gardner to urge him to vote no on any bill that would take away access to coverage or the services Planned Parenthood provides. Join us in DEMANDING that he stands with Coloradans by rejecting this unjust bill. Call him today at (303) 391-5777