Attorney General James Marks 10 Year Anniversary of ACA by Continuing to Fight to Protect Health Reform Law

Coronavirus Underscores Why Every American Should Have the Right to Health Care

NEW YORK – New York Attorney General Letitia James today marked the 10-year anniversary of the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) by releasing the following statement:

“In the 10 years since the passage of the ACA, there has never been a time when ensuring access to quality, affordable health coverage is more essential for every New Yorker. As we battle a global pandemic, imagine if Americans were charged more for health coverage because of a pre-existing condition, like the coronavirus, or worse, if they were denied coverage altogether. If a number of states and the Trump Administration have their way, that grim nightmare could be a reality. Overnight, health coverage could be stripped away from 20 million Americans and 133 million Americans could be denied coverage because of their preexisting conditions. It’s time the president and Republican states drop this lawsuit and realize America is healthier and more prosperous today because of the ACA. If they don’t, our coalition will continue the fight to ensure we do not go backwards.”

President Barack Obama signed the ACA into law on March 23, 2010. In the 10 years since its passage, the law has faced multiple challenges — through Congress and in the courts, including in the U.S. Supreme Court. Despite all these challenges, the health care reform law remains largely intact and has ensured coverage for millions of Americans. Earlier this month, the Supreme Court agreed to review another case that seeks to repeal the entire ACA and that puts tens of millions of Americans’ health care at risk, which Attorney General James — as part of a 21-state coalition — is leading the fight against.

Attorney General James and the coalition will lead the defense of the ACA in order to protect the important advancements in health care access made under the law, including:

  • More than 12 million Americans now receive health coverage through the ACA’s Medicaid expansion;
  • Nearly nine million individuals nationwide receive tax credits to help subsidize their health insurance coverage through individual marketplaces;
  • Millions of working families rely on high-quality employer-sponsored health insurance plans;
  • Important protections prohibit insurers from denying health insurance to the 133 million Americans with pre-existing conditions, like diabetes, cancer, or pregnancy, or from charging individuals higher premiums because of their health status; and
  • Nearly $1.3 trillion in federal funding has been dedicated to keeping Americans healthy and covered, which includes spending through Medicaid expansion and public health dollars.

And in New York:

  • The state uninsured rate reached its lowest point ever recorded in 2018 — 4.7-percent;
  • More than 4.7 million New Yorkers now receive health coverage through the ACA, including nearly 3.3 million on Medicaid;
  • 58-percent of enrollees were expected to receive $636 million in tax credits to help subsidize the cost of health care in 2019 alone; and
  • The average monthly premium tax credit available to eligible Qualified Health Plan enrollees in 2019 was $335.