Rep. Wild, House Democrats Denounce Trump’s Health Care Rights Law Rollback
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Representative Susan Wild (PA-07) joined 124 Members of the House of Representatives in sending a letter to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alexander Azar asking him to withdraw a proposed rule that would roll back key provisions of the Health Care Rights Law, Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The proposed rule would embolden widespread discrimination in health care, allowing insurance companies, hospitals, doctors, nurses, and other health care providers and entities to deny patients care because of who they are, what language they speak, their sexual orientation or gender identity, or because they are seeking reproductive care.
“I believe in the core, moral principle that quality, affordable health care is the right of every woman, man and child in our country,” Wild said. “This rule, and its explicit targeting of the LGBTQ+ community, women, and people of color is simply unconscionable. Who you are should never impact the quality of health care you can receive. I am proud to join my colleagues in our continued effort to ensure health care is truly a right for all Americans.”
In the letter, the lawmakers highlight that the proposed rule to roll back the provisions of the Health Care Rights Law under the ACA would harm patients and increase health disparities for the LGBTQ+ community, those seeking reproductive care, and others. If this rule is finalized, an estimated two million transgender patients could be unlawfully denied access to the care they need or forego care entirely for fear of discrimination. Women of color and low-income communities, who also already face discrimination at disproportionate rates, could be denied the appropriate, life-saving care they deserve under the auspice of religious objection.
“The proposed rule ignores twenty years of federal court precedent by proposing to eliminate protections against discrimination on the basis of gender identity and completely disregards Supreme Court precedent on discrimination based on sex stereotyping,” wrote the lawmakers in the letter. “Although the proposal acknowledges that Title IX prohibits discrimination based on pregnancy, including termination of pregnancy, it attempts to remove any recognition of that protection from the rule, and refuses to state whether the Department would enforce those protections. This is an attack on all of our civil rights and will harm the very people Congress intended the Health Care Rights Law to protect.”
The members are calling for the proposed rule to be withdrawn in its entirety.
The full text of the letter can be found here.