Sixteen Organizations Call on Texas Leaders to Act on Health Care Law

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 28, 2012
Contact: Christine Sinatra: (512) 473-2274

Sixteen Organizations Call on Texas Leaders to Act on Health Care Law

AUSTIN, Texas—Sixteen local and statewide groups have challenged elected leaders in Texas to get to work on ensuring more children and families have health care and on making health care insurance work better for Texans, in the wake of today’s Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act. Partners and members of the Texas Well and Healthy Campaign released this statement:

Now more than ever, Texans need health care to work for the people of Texas. As the state with the highest rate of uninsured, including the most uninsured children, this court case has been closely watched by families all over our state. They know the status quo, which shuts out many people with chronic illnesses and leaves others to fend for themselves in the expensive emergency rooms, is costly, wrong and unsustainable. For these Texans, passage of the Affordable Care Act was a step toward ending discrimination by insurance companies, ensuring care for those who are sick, promoting prevention and holding insurers accountable. In no state does today’s decision have a bigger impact than right here in Texas, where since the law passed over 7.5 million have benefited.

Today’s ruling is cause for celebration—and for action. It is time for Texas leaders to get to work on implementing the law so that more Texans benefit. One important step is to move forward with accepting the opportunity to cover millions of Texans through the Medicaid program, something that the federal government pays for in full or covers 90 percent of the cost of under this law. Families in Texas need the same chance as those in other parts of the country to get the care they need. We also must establish an exchange that will allow many of the over 6 million currently uninsured Texans and hundreds of Texas small businesses to access good healthcare coverage at prices they can afford.  Governor Perry should make his priority setting up a health insurance exchange that is made especially for Texas.

The ruling today is welcome news for millions of Texans: children with pre-existing health conditions who get to keep the health care they need; young adults who can stay on their parents’ health plans; small businesses that receive tax credits for covering their employees; and millions of other Texans who benefit from the law’s free preventive care without co-pays and lowered drug costs in Medicare.

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The Texas Well and Healthy campaign is a broad, grassroots coalition working to ensure that every Texan has access to comprehensive and affordable health insurance. It is a collaboration of members of Cover Texas Now and other health care coalitions in the state, and led by the Center for Public Policy Priorities, Children’s Defense Fund- Texas, Engage Texas and Texans Care for Children. More about the campaign is at http://texaswellandhealthy.org

Organizations signing on to this statement:

San Antonio Nonprofit Council

Texas Organizing Project

Texas Public Interest Research Group

Driscoll Children’s Health Plan

Methodist Healthcare Ministries

Texas Impact

Children’s Defense Fund – Texas

Center for Public Policy Priorities

Texans Care for Children

Legacy Community Health Services

Texas HIV/AIDS Coalition

Alamo Breast Cancer Foundation

Gateway to Care

National Association of Social Workers/Texas Chapter

La Fe Policy Research and Education Center

The Arc of Texas

 

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