Earlier this year, Maurice voted for the most significant and positive piece of health care reform legislation since the creation of Medicare and Medicaid in 1965. The measure bars insurers from denying coverage to Americans based on pre-existing conditions or dropping individuals when they become sick. The measure also closes the gap in Medicare prescription drug coverage for seniors.
For the 415,000 residents Maurice represents who already have health insurance, the law provides immediate safeguards from insurance company abuses and will improve coverage. For those people and families who are self-employed, unemployed, or work for a small business, they will have access to the same types of private health insurance choices that members of Congress have through a competitive health insurance market that keeps costs down. Up to 158,000 families and 15,100 small businesses in Maurice's district will receive tax credits to help them afford coverage. Over 109,000 Medicare beneficiaries will see a dramatic improvement in their benefits and will pay nothing for preventive care, and 68,000 young adults will be able to obtain coverage through their parents' insurance plans until their 26th birthday. The new law will also extend coverage to 47,000 of Maurice's constituents who have, for far too long, gone without care, and guarantee that more than 10,000 people he represents are no longer denied coverage simply because they have a pre-existing condition.
These essential reforms will not only alleviate the economic burden of health care felt by families, small businesses, seniors and young adults, but will also help to address our nation's fiscal woes, reducing the budget deficit by $143 billion in the first ten years and then by another $1.2 trillion in the following decade by cutting waste, fraud, abuse and overpayments to insurance companies.