Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson announced a new report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which highlights the number of people in Texas that are already benefiting from the Affordable Care Act. March 23rd is the third anniversary of the enactment of the Affordable Care Act.
"Millions of Texans, including many of my constituents, are already seeing lower health care costs and receiving better insurance coverage," said Congresswoman Johnson. "I will continue to oppose Republicans' efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and work with my Democratic colleagues to ensure that this important law continues to be implemented effectively." Congresswoman Johnson continued.
The new report shows that the health care law has already provided:
· No lifetime limit on health insurance coverage for 7,536,000 residents of Texas, including 2,771,000 women and 2,094,000 children. The health care law prohibits insurers from placing a lifetime limit on coverage. In the past, lifetime limits on coverage have forced some families to declare personal bankruptcy.
· Lower drug costs for 206,304 seniors in Texas.The health care law makes prescription drug coverage for people with Medicare more affordable. It does this by gradually closing the gap in drug coverage known as the "donut hole.' Because of this provision, in 2012 alone, 206,304 seniors in Texas saved over $140.2 million on their drugs -- an average of $680 per senior.
· Free key preventive services for 5,198,000 Texans. The law requires many insurance plans to provide coverage with no deductible or co-pay for a number of preventive health services like flu shots, annual wellness visits, mammograms, Pap smears, and colon cancer screenings. Because of this provision, 5,198,000 Texans now have access to these preventive services at no cost.
· Coverage for 357,000 young adults in Texas, who would otherwise be uninsured. The health care law requires health insurers to permit parents to retain coverage for their children until their 26th birthday. As a result, 357,000 young adults in Texas have gained health insurance through their parents' plan.
· Rebates from insurance companies benefiting 1,516,721 consumers in Texas. Under the health care law, insurers must spend at least 80 percent of premiums on medical care and quality improvement -- rather than on CEO pay, profits, and administrative costs. Insurance companies that fail to meet this standard must pay rebates to their customers. Last year, 1,516,721 consumers in Texas benefited from $166,975,840 in rebates from their insurance companies.