Sickle Cell Foundation of GA Says All Patients Stand to Lose with a Repeal of the Affordable Care Act
The Sickle Cell Foundation of Georgia, Inc., a statewide nonprofit dedicated to assisting thousands of state residents with the chronic red blood cell disorder, today reaffirmed its support for the Affordable Care Act, and for the critical protection of pre-existing conditions — which it enabled. The Foundation and stakeholders are concerned about a lawsuit before the Supreme Court to overturn the Affordable Care Act. For millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions, such a sweeping decision would cut or limit access to needed healthcare and reverse all gains that favor medical homes.
“Thousands of Georgians suffer from Sickle Cell Disease and most are either under-insured or are not insured at all,” explained Dr. Otis Powell, the SCFG Medical Director and a private practitioner treating SCD patients. Oral arguments are scheduled for Tuesday, November 10 before the U.S. Supreme Court.
“The ACA remains the law of the land for now, but if the high court strikes down the ACA, some 20 million people could become uninsured, added Board Chair Chuck Douglas, a SCD patient and father of teens with SCD. “This is an extremely serious matter and we must find a way to protect all patients. We simply cannot return to the way it was.”
SCFG leaders are helping sound the alarm on this issue and are joining forces with other organizations and families to amplify the risks for persons with preexisting conditions. “Thousands of Georgians with pre-existing health conditions such as Sickle Cell Disease depend upon the Affordable Care Act to protect them and their families in times of challenge and especially during a health crisis,” said SCFG Health Affairs & Clinical Laboratory Services Director Milford Greene. “Without the protection of the ACA, and in particular the provision that prevents insurers from discriminating against those with virtually any pre-existing health condition such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, etc., would position many families for potential if not certain catastrophe.”
Patient advocate Mia Robinson said the Affordable Care Act has been a blessing to her as a person living with Sickle Cell disease. “I am unable to maintain an ordinary nine to five so obtaining health insurance has been a task. The ACA made health insurance affordable so that I can continue my health care maintenance. Without it, my health will be directly impacted which will greatly affect my family and community.”
Patients such as Mia are concerned that health insurers may also consider COVID-19, which has affected more than 9.9 million Americans, as a pre-existing health condition. Vaccines currently covered by the ACA may not be going forward.
For more information about the Sickle Cell Foundation of Georgia call (404) 755-1641 or visit www.sicklecellga.org.