Ladies, beware: the American Health Care Act was narrowly approved by the House of Representatives on Thursday, and if it becomes law, health care will probably become significantly less affordable for you — especially if you’re a mom.
GOP legislators presented the plan, which was created to repeal and replace much of the Affordable Care Act, after failing to bring an earlier version of the legislation to a vote this past March. Under the revised version, states would have the ability to deny you coverage or hike up premiums for pre-existing conditions — which in this case refers to things as common as pregnancy, C-sections and postpartum depression (in addition to a slew of other “conditions,” including sexual assault.) Your access to gynecological services and mammograms would also be at risk.
Ironically, as Sarah Spellings writes in The Cut, “the amendment also reads, ‘Nothing in this Act shall be construed as permitting health insurance issuers to discriminate in rates for health insurance coverage by gender.’” If you’re having trouble reconciling this statement, we’re right there with you (we’re pretty sure the vast majority of people who undergo C-sections and postpartum depression identify as women).
And if you’re worried you might get screwed over — essentially because you’re female — you’re not alone (as you’ve probably gathered from Friday morning’s headlines, among them “Rape and Domestic Violence Could be Pre-existing Conditions” from CNN and “To Trump and the GOP, Being a Woman Is a Pre-Existing Condition” from Slate).
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) took to Twitter to express her outrage: “This isn’t football. It’s not about scoring points. #AHCA will devastate Americans’ healthcare. Families will go bankrupt. People will die,” she tweeted.
Sen. Gillibrand (D-NY) expressed similar sentiments: “The bill to replace Obamacare that passed today in the House is atrocious and must be defeated in the Senate,” she tweeted on Thursday.
Of course, the act still needs to get through the Senate and then would go back to the House before becoming law, but it’s understandable many women are not feeling particularly confident about the future of their healthcare.
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