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09/22/2017

Gov. Malloy and Lt. Gov. Wyman Announce Impact of Graham-Cassidy Healthcare Bill on Connecticut

Threatens Healthcare Coverage for Tens of Thousands of Residents; Potential Loss of Nearly $7 Billion in Revenue to the State Through 2026

(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman today announced that according to a new analysis of the impact on Connecticut of the Graham-Cassidy bill – the latest version of Trumpcare – healthcare coverage for tens-of-thousands of the state’s residents could be threatened. Ultimately, as much as $2.2 billion in annual costs would be added to the state at full implementation in 2026, with total costs projected to reach almost $7 billion through fiscal year 2026.

**For the analysis on how the most recent version of Trumpcare will impact Connecticut, click here**

“Plain and simple, this is the most staggering version of Trumpcare we have seen yet,” Governor Malloy said. “This bill has the potential to result in a devastating cost shift of nearly $7 billion to Connecticut and could eliminate access to health care for tens-of-thousands of our residents, needlessly putting their lives at risk. The bill eviscerates Medicaid and essentially ends the program as we know it. Particularly for some of our most vulnerable populations – including those with pre-existing conditions – premiums and costs will increase, making coverage unaffordable. Perhaps most egregious, this bill fails to address in any form rising health care costs and instead shifts those burdens directly onto consumers and states. If enacted, Trumpcare will jeopardize the coverage people already have, drive up costs, and severely limit care. Once again, I call on Republicans in Congress to work with governors on both sides of the aisle on real reforms to improve health care for all.”

“This bill guts Medicaid and puts meaningful healthcare coverage out of reach for hundreds of thousands in Connecticut,” Lt. Governor Wyman, who also serves as chair of the board of Access Health CT, said. “There is a reason every major health care organization opposes this bill. It penalizes states like Connecticut for expanding access to Medicaid and insurance coverage. It jeopardizes patients’ access to care, it targets women, it undercuts providers, and it continues to threaten the stability of the insurance marketplace. Connecticut has among the lowest uninsured rates in the nation. We have bipartisan work to do to improve the ACA, but this bill fails to keep people covered, address healthcare costs, build a stronger healthcare system, improve the lives of residents, or strengthen our economy.”

The analysis, which was prepared by the Office of Policy and Management, found that the latest Trumpcare proposal threatens coverage for low-income families and drives up costs for everyone. Specifically, the proposal will have the following impact on Connecticut:

• In FY 2026, the authority to serve the Medicaid expansion population with any federal support ends, leaving over 200,000 Connecticut adults without any coverage.
• Other anticipated Medicaid funding reductions by 2026 are equivalent to 80,000 to 170,000 fewer Connecticut residents being served under Medicaid.
• The repeal of the Cost Sharing Reduction Program and the Advanced Premium Tax Credits has the potential to increase premiums by $3,300 per year for Access Health CT enrollees.

“This measure would be monstrously cruel, indeed catastrophic, for Connecticut and the nation,” U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal said. “This analysis shows how devastating it would be in essentially ending insurance coverage, encouraging discrimination, denying protection against abuses, and eliminating Medicaid as we know it. Graham-Cassidy is even more reckless than the last Republican healthcare bill, resulting in over $7 billion lost for our state. I am prepared to fight this plan with everything I have.”

“The new Republican health care bill would be an absolute humanitarian disaster for Connecticut,” U.S. Senator Chris Murphy said. “Tens of thousands of Connecticut residents will lose health care, the state will lose $7 billion, and Medicaid as we know it will end. Everybody has to stand up to raise the alarm bell and do everything they can to stop the worst version of Trumpcare yet from passing.”

“What the American people want is solutions when it comes health care,” Congressman John Larson said. “The Affordable Care Act has expanded health insurance access to millions while providing critical patient protections. We need to build on the ACA to improve access and affordability for all. Instead, Graham-Cassidy would tear down the progress of the ACA, throw the insurance market into chaos, lead to millions losing their health insurance, erode protections for preexisting conditions, and raise health care costs. This bill would be a disaster for CT and the nation and must be opposed. It’s time for Congress to listen to the American people and work on bipartisan solutions.”

“Graham-Cassidy unravels seven years of productive work in Connecticut to cut our uninsured rate to one of the lowest in the country,” Congressman Joe Courtney said. “This bill would reverse all of that progress by decimating our states' Medicaid program, leaving it far worse off than before the Affordable Care Act. Elderly patients in nursing homes, expectant mothers receiving prenatal care, children with developmental disabilities, and patients recovering from opioid addiction will be irreparably harmed if this horrific bill is rushed to passage.”

“With federal health care dollars being stripped from Connecticut and transferred elsewhere, the Graham-Cassidy bill means devastation for Connecticut families: higher costs, less coverage, key protections gutted, a crushing age tax and stealing from Medicaid,” Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty said. “Previous health care bills have failed for a simple reason: they would have hurt millions of Americans, and the American people knew it. The newest healthcare bill is more of the same – just another attempt to jam a bad bill through Congress without proper debate or input from all stakeholders. It is wrong for Connecticut, and it is wrong for our country. One party negotiating behind closed doors – shutting out the public – is not the way to serve the families we are sent here to represent. There are real problems in our health care system that we need to fix. Let’s work together on ways to lower premiums and deductibles, reduce drug costs, and expand access to quality, affordable care. The time is now for bipartisan action. We can and we must do better. We should continue to work on a bipartisan health care plan that truly brings us closer to our shared goal of quality, affordable health care for every American.”

“This latest attempt to tear down the Affordable Care Act has the most potential for destruction of anything we’ve seen so far as it forces enormous burdens onto states without any of the resources necessary to succeed,” Congressman Jim Himes said. “Countless Connecticut residents, especially those with preexisting conditions, will find it harder and more expensive to get insurance. Our families, friends and neighbors will live sicker and die earlier is this bill becomes law.”

**Download: Analysis of the most recent version of Trumpcare on Connecticut

Twitter: https://twitter.com/@LGWyman
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LtGovWyman
Juliet Manalan
Communications Director
Office of Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman
(o) 860.524.7377
(m) 860.913.7528

portal.ct.gov/ltgovernor
Twitter: @LGWyman
FB: Office of Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman