Mr. KERRY. Mr. President, the recently enacted health reform law will extend quality, affordable health coverage to 32 million Americans and cover 95 percent of legal residents within the next decade.
Many Americans, including Christian Scientists, rely on provisions in current law that recognize spiritual care as a medical expense eligible for a medical care tax deduction. Nothing in the recently enacted health reform law prevents insurance companies from covering care that is currently recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as eligible for a medical care tax deduction through health insurance plans in the exchanges. Further, the new health reform law does not reduce existing provisions in the law that recognize spiritual care.
As we work to implement comprehensive health reform, I believe it is important to ensure that the needs of Americans relying on religious and spiritual care are addressed. I know these views are shared by my colleagues, Chairman Harkin and Senator Sherrod Brown, and I look forward to continue working with them on this issue.
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