HFA and 25 other patient groups issued the following statement in response to Wednesday's court ruling in Braidwood v. Becerra (a lawsuit formerly known as Kelley v. Becerra):
"The ruling on September 7 by a federal district judge in Texas could significantly undermine access to required cost-free coverage for preventive services in the Affordable Care Act as recommended by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Individuals will not immediately lose access to these preventive services because the Court has not yet ruled on the scope of relief or remedy. However, this decision could ultimately allow the reinstatement of financial barriers that in the past discouraged all too many Americans from obtaining preventive care, such as screenings for cancer and hypertension, helping people who smoke quit, and preventive care for pregnant women and babies.
"Among the Affordable Care Act's most popular and effective provisions have been the requirement that insurance cover â€“ without cost-sharing â€“ services that help screen for and prevent disease. Access to preventive healthcare can prevent both disease and early death. In recent years, more than 150 million Americans have benefited from expanded access to preventive services under the Affordable Care Act. Studies repeatedly show that high-quality coverage, complete with preventive services, improves the overall health of individuals and our country, lowers overall health spending, and reduces health disparities.
"This ruling directly threatens these benefits and would result in a return to financial and other barriers proven to discourage Americans from obtaining lifesaving, preventive care. Our organizations are deeply committed to ensuring everyone has access to the care they need, and we will vigorously defend individuals' rights to access these critical services."
The AIDS Institute
American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
American Heart Association
American Kidney Fund
American Lung Association
Cancer Support Community
Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
Hemophilia Federation of America
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
Lupus Foundation of America
The Mended Hearts, Inc.
Muscular Dystrophy Association
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)
National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship
National Health Council
National Hemophilia Foundation
National Kidney Foundation
National Multiple Sclerosis Society
National Organization for Rare Disorders
National Patient Advocate Foundation
National Psoriasis Foundation
Susan G. Komen
WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease