Brown Blasts Trump for Blocking Millions of Americans from Accessing Affordable Health Insurance amid Pandemic

As Coronavirus Pandemic Spreads, Trump Refuses To Reopen ACA Enrollment Window for Uninsured and Under-Insured; Move could Block Hundreds of Thousands of Ohioans from Accessing Life-Saving, Affordable Health Coverage

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Brown today blasted the Trump Administration’s efforts to repeal, sabotage, or undermine healthcare coverage provided by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), by refusing to reopen enrollment for the ACA’s federal exchanges amid the coronavirus pandemic. The decision not to reopen HealthCare.gov is a severe blow to Americans in about two-thirds of states that don’t run their own exchanges and instead use the federal exchange to access HealthCare.gov, like Ohio. 

“Families in Ohio shouldn’t have to suffer because of the Trump Administration’s political games. Ohioans deserve better. It’s past time for this administration to stop playing politics with Ohioans’ healthcare and start taking this crisis seriously,” said Brown.

On March 12, Brown joined 25 of his Senate colleagues in signing a letter asking the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to re-open the window and establish special enrollment periods for anyone seeking individual or family coverage through the federal exchange and relaunch HealthCare.gov so more Americans could sign up.

While costs and treatments vary, a recent report by FAIR Health found that uninsured Americans with COVID-19 could pay an estimated average of $73,300 for a 6-day hospital stay, which is about ten times more than someone with health insurance.

This past year, despite the fact that the Trump Administration shortened the enrollment period and reduced public outreach, 8.3 million people still purchased or re-enrolled in ACA health plans using the HealthCare.gov platform during the 2020 open enrollment period, which the Trump Administration closed on December 15, 2019.

Today, nearly 28 million Americans still lack health insurance.  And the Trump-backed lawsuit to tear down the entire ACA continues to go forward in the midst of the pandemic.

 

###