Senate Republicans have decided to postpone voting on their latest ACA repeal legislation, the Graham-Cassidy bill sponsored by Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). The bill would dismantle both ACA expansion Medicaid and traditional Medicaid programs.
"We don't have the votes," Cassidy admitted after a meeting with his colleagues on Tuesday afternoon. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) had announced his no vote on Friday, citing a process he said was rushed and not a bipartesan process.
Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) pulled her support on Monday, due to the planned Medicaid cuts and lack of protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Collins waited until she received confirmation from a preliminary report released by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).
Graham said that Congress will turn its attention to tax reform before taking up the health care debate again. He expressed confidence that their healthcare bill will eventually gain enough votes. "It's not if, only a matter of when," he said, adding that the bill needs more "attention" and "time" before it becomes law.
Sens. Graham and Cassidy have plans drum up support for the bill by touring the country. "We're going to take our show on the road," Graham said.
The Congressional Budget Office doesn't have time to score the Graham-Cassidy healthcare repeal bill before it's called for vote on the Senate floor. Access Living in Chicago has stepped into this void to assess the impact of Graham-Cassidy on Illinois citizens. This is what they've found.
Listen to Jimmy Kimmel speak out against the proposed Graham-Cassidy senate bill:
The financial impact of Graham-Cassidy on home and community-based living in Illinois is clear. This rendition of "Repeal & Replace" will cause Illinois to lose $8 billion dollars for Medicaid between 2020 and 2026. When the block grant expires, Illinois will lose $10 billion in 2027 alone.
Graham-Cassidy is tough on people with pre-existing conditions. Keep in mind that "people with disabilities" is another way of saying "people with pre-existing conditions."
Graham-Cassidy is wrong for Illinois.
AARP, the Commonwealth Fund, and the SCAN Foundation have just released the third edition of their "Long-Term Services and Supports State Scorecard" (2017 Edition). The report finds that the states of Washington, Minnesota, Vermont, Oregon, and Alaska are best at providing support for home healthcare for older adults and their family caretakers.
Emphasizing home and community-based living makes both emotional and fiscal sense. Not only do 9 out of 10 Americans express a preference for inclusive living, but it is by far the most affordable option. On average, home care costs about $128 per day but care in a nursing home costs approximately $230 a day.
Washington tops the list of states because it prioritizes support for home and community-based care. Here are the seven distinct lessons Illinois can learn from how Washington helped more adults age in place:
Inclusion PAC is grateful to Roustabout Media for granting permission to incorporate the movie trailer for "Piss on Pity: The Story of ADAPT" on our home page. ADAPT has been fighting hard for home and community living all across the nation, and we are anxious for their story to be told in full. Roustabout Media is currently raising funds to turn its footage into a full-length documentary. Please consider donating to this worthy cause.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 9/4/17
Inclusion PAC Begins Fighting Against Institutionalization in Illinois
New Political Action Committee Formed for Illinois Citizens with Disabilities
Batavia, Illinois: A grassroots group of citizens has launched Inclusion PAC, a non-partisan political action committee thought to be the first PAC in Illinois designed to promote home and community living for citizens with disabilities.
Today, Illinois institutionalizes vast numbers of people with developmental, physical, behavioral, and age-related disabilities. Institutionalization removes people from their communities, families, and social networks that are vital for a healthy and fulfilling life.
Deb Hamilton, co-founder and treasurer of Inclusion PAC, says “Despite Illinois’ budgetary woes, we remain the fifth wealthiest state in the union. However, we rate 40th on spending for programs that support people in their homes and communities. Historically, institutions and nursing facilities have divorced people with disabilities from social networks that provide essential emotional and physical support. Inclusion PAC seeks to influence policymakers away from this dangerous model, and towards programs that bring citizens with disabilities back into their communities.”
Inclusion PAC seeks to elect and re-elect legislators who support inclusive living for Illinois citizens with disabilities. Inclusive living means that people with disabilities can choose to live in their own homes and/or their own communities, instead of being isolated in large institutions or nursing facilities situated away from home.
About Inclusion PAC: Inclusion PAC advocates for programs, policies, and funding which support inclusive living for all ages and types of disabilities.
Visit the Inclusion PAC website for more information (www.inclusionpac.org).
Contributed by the committee officers of Inclusion PAC.