Today, following the House of Representatives vote to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-20) reiterated her testimony of last evening given before the House Rules Committee about the impact repeal would have on America's working families and our national debt. She also condemned the Republicans' hypocrisy in breaking their pledge to conduct a more open and transparent House of Representatives by holding absolutely no Committee hearings on the repeal bill, and sending it to the Floor of the House with no opportunity for amendments.
"There is a human face to repealing health care," said Rep. Wasserman Schultz, citing the case of 19-year-old Chastity Hart of Miami, who was diagnosed with Lupus, a chronic autoimmune disease three years ago. "Plain and simple, repealing health care will rob health security from Chastity and millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions."
Yesterday evening, Rep. Wasserman Schultz testified that, without health care reform, Chastity Hart will soon become ineligible to remain on her mother's insurance. If the health care law is repealed, Ms. Hart--who takes four different expensive medications every day, recently spent six months undergoing chemotherapy, and who was rushed to the emergency room just this week for problems that had developed with her spinal cord--would be all but uninsurable in the future, given her pre-existing condition. Rep. Wasserman Schultz also testified that the Hart family faces skyrocketing out-of-pocket costs, but the Affordable Care Act would end the prohibitive lifetime caps that cripple families dealing with chronic illnesses. It also prohibits insurers from discriminating against those with pre-existing conditions and allows young adults like Chastity to remain on their parents' health plans until age 26.
"Health care reform finally rid our country of the terrible angst of facing illness without coverage," said Rep. Wasserman Schultz. "Yet on Day One, House Republicans have begun their march to hand patients' rights back to insurance companies with legislation to repeal health reform."
Since the enactment of the Affordable Care Act in March 2010, the economy has created 935,000 private sector jobs and has experienced eleven straight months of private sector job growth, for a total of more than a million private sector jobs created in 2010. In the health care sector specifically, since October 2009, approximately 20,000 health care jobs have been added each month. Today's December 2010 jobs report showed that 36,000 of the 103,000 jobs created were in the health care sector.