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Today, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear arguments in the ACA Repeal Lawsuit (Texas v. Azar), a case that could strip 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At least 526,000 Tennesseans would lose health insurance immediately if the ACA is repealed, including 221,533 Tennesseans who are insured through the federal Marketplace, 47,000 young adults up to 26 who are on their parents’ insurance, and former foster children under 26. 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Tennessee women, and 630,100 Tennesseans between ages 55 and 64, whose future who would be jeopardized if the ACA was repealed.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.
Michele Johnson, Executive Director of the Tennessee Justice Center, said, “This assault on our healthcare system threatens the financial security and peace of mind of millions of Tennesseans, including children and seniors. We are calling 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.”