211 7th Avenue N, Ste. 100

Nashville, TN 37219

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June 25, 2020 –


Michele Johnson

Executive Director

(615) 417-1492

Today, briefs were filed by the plaintiffs in the ACA Repeal Lawsuit (California v. Texas), advancing a dangerous lawsuit that if successful, would take health care coverage from those in our state who need it most, including cancer survivors, people with diabetes, and people with substance use disorders. The lawsuit was brought by 17 attorneys general, including the Attorney General of Tennessee, and three governors in yet another attempt to gut the law in the wake of Congress’s failure to repeal it.

At least 526,000 Tennesseans would lose health insurance immediately if the ACA is repealed, including  221,533 Tennesseans who are insured through the federal Marketplace, 47,000 young adults up to age 26 who are on their parents’ insurance, and former foster children under age 26. We expect even more Tennesseans will be negatively affected by the ACA repeal due to unemployment skyrocketing because of the pandemic and loss of employer-sponsored insurance. Such a decision would threaten coverage for women, older adults, and people with pre-existing conditions. 2,718,800 (40%) of Tennesseans have a pre-existing condition, including 355,200 Tennessee children, 1,382,000 Tennessee women, and 630,100 Tennesseans between ages 55 and 64, whose future who would be jeopardized if the ACA was repealed.

Striking down the entirety of the ACA would also strip away many consumer protections enshrined within the law and beloved by the public, including: prohibitions on charging women or older adults more for the same policy as men or younger people, the elimination of out-of-pocket expenses for many preventive services, and requiring plans to cover certain essential health benefits like prescription drugs and hospital stays. The coronavirus pandemic has emphasized what we’ve known all along – access to health care is crucial.  

Michele Johnson, Executive Director of the Tennessee Justice Center, said, “The current health and economic crisis in our country puts into stark contrast the efforts of the Trump administration and state attorneys general to repeal a law that keeps Americans safe and healthy. The pandemic shows that we are interconnected and the health of your neighbor affects your health. We continue to call on our leaders to pull out of this devastating lawsuit so that Tennessee families don’t have to worry if a loved one will lose coverage, which can be a matter of life and death.”