Action Alert: Ohio is Key in Opposing the Senate Health Care Vote

U.S. Senate leaders announced, after a delay, they plan to unveil a revised Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) this week and plan to vote on it next Thursday, June 20. For reference, here is the Academy’s recent statement opposing the bill. Colleen Kraft, MD, FAAP, an Ohio pediatrician and president-elect of the American Academy of Pediatrics is on Capitol Hill today representing six medical organizations representing over 560,000 docs that oppose the bill.

Your action is also needed NOW. The national AAP created a tailored advocacy toolkit for chapters and members who live in states with senators who are legislative targets – in other words, their votes are particularly important in determining whether or not the Senate bill will pass. Ohio is included on that list because of Sen. Rob Portman and Gov. John Kasich.

Sen. Rob Portman (R) has expressed concerned over the Medicaid policies in the bill, especially policies that impact drug treatment amid Ohio’s opioid epidemic. In addition, Gov. John Kasich (R) has expressed his opposition to the bill and his upmost concerns with rising health care costs, which he believes the bill does not address. Governor Kasich wrote a letter to Senator McCain expressing concern about cuts to Medicaid because Ohio is a Medicaid expansion state.

TARGET: Sen. Rob Portman (R)

Senator Portman’s DC Office phone number: (202) 224-3353

Website: https://www.portman.senate.gov/ 

Twitter Handle: @senrobportman

Key Messages for Senator Portman: 

  • As a pediatrician in Ohio, I want to thank you for expressing your concerns over the Senate health care bill’s cuts to the Medicaid program. Medicaid is a lifeline for the 1.3 million children in our state who rely on the program for health insurance.
  • Share a brief anecdote about a patient you care for on Medicaid.
  • Currently, 72% of the total federal funds received by Ohio is for Medicaid. If this funding is cut, our state may be forced to chip away at health care coverage in other ways, pitting one vulnerable population against the next. This could also negatively impact the Medicaid funding used for drug and substance use disorder treatment amid the opioid epidemic our state is experiencing.
  • Children’s hospitals would also suffer from Medicaid funding cuts, which would affect all patients not just those on Medicaid
  • Please continue to oppose the Better Care Reconciliation Act

TARGET: Gov. John Kasich (R)

In-state phone number: (614) 466-3555

Website: http://www.governor.ohio.gov/ 

Twitter Handle: @JohnKasich

Key Messages for Governor Kasich: 

  • Governor Kasich, thank you for expressing your concerns about the Senate health care bill’s cuts to Medicaid funding. I am a pediatrician in Ohio and I am concerned about the devastating effects the Better Care Reconciliation Act will have on children and families in our state. Medicaid is a lifeline for the 1.3 million children in our state who rely on the program for health insurance. It is important that you remain strongly opposed to any bill that includes cuts to the Medicaid program.
  • Share a brief anecdote about a patient you care for on Medicaid.
  • Currently, 72% of the total federal funds received by Ohio is for Medicaid. If this funding is cut, our state may be forced to chip away at health care coverage in other ways, pitting one vulnerable population against the next. This could also negatively impact the Medicaid funding used for drug and substance use disorder treatment amid the opioid epidemic our state is experiencing.
  • Children’s hospitals would also suffer from Medicaid funding cuts, which would affect all patients not just those on Medicaid.
  • Please urge Senator Portman to oppose the Better Care Reconciliation Act.

State-specific data: 

  • Ohio children’s coverage fact sheet 
  • New brief: State-by-State Coverage and Government Spending Implications of the Better Care Reconciliation Act
  • In Ohio, how much higher would the uninsured rate be under the Senate bill (BCRA) than under the ACA in 2022? 184% (source)
  • In Ohio, how much lower would federal health care spending be under the Senate bill (BCRA) than under the ACA in 2022? 38.3% (source)
  • The Georgetown Center for Children and Families Rural Health Report and state data on child health coverage in small towns and rural areas (including county level data)

https://www.ohiobeef.org/ http://advantageprintsolutions.com/ http://www.ohiochildrenshospitals.org/

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