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Access to affordable health insurance coverage will be a critical component in reaching the goal of ending hunger by 2030. In 2015, for the first time in eight years, the United States saw a significant decline in the overall rate of food insecurity and poverty. This decline was due, in part, to increased access to health care through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly referred to as Obamacare.
Major provisions of the law included mandates for individuals to purchase or employers to provide health insurance, creation of health insurance exchanges, subsidies or tax credits for qualifying individuals and families to purchase health insurance through the exchanges, and expansion of Medicaid to individuals younger than 65 with gross incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty line. Other popular provisions include the ability to purchase insurance despite pre-existing conditions, coverage for young adults up to age 26 on a parent’s health insurance plan, and access to preventive care at no additional cost.
Repealing the ACA without a replacement plan would negatively affect progress made towards ending hunger in the United States by 2030. It would more than double the number of uninsured Americans and result in a higher rate of uninsured Americans than before the law was passed. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that more than 32 million Ameri-cans would lose the security of health coverage by 2026.
Call your members of Congress today at 800/826-3688. Tell your senators and representative to vote against any legislation that repeals the ACA or the expansion of Medicaid without a responsible alternative in place. Individuals and families should not have to choose between paying for food or paying for medical costs.
By Marlysa D. Gamblin and Kathleen King
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