Shaheen Statement on Anniversary of Affordable Care Act

March 23, 2021

**Shaheen recently included portions of her legislation to lower costs and expand access to health care for millions of Americans in the American Rescue Plan, which is the most significant improvement to the Affordable Care Act since it was signed into law in 2010.**

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) issued the following statement on the eleventh anniversary of the Affordable Care Act being signed into law: 

“The Affordable Care Act changed the way we view health care in the United States – as a right, not a privilege,” said Shaheen. “Over a decade later – with millions of Americans and more than 100,000 Granite Staters covered due to the health care law – we look back on how far we’ve come and recommit to finishing what we started by ensuring cost is never a barrier to care. I’ve heard from Granite Staters in every corner of New Hampshire over the years about what the Affordable Care Act has meant for them – parents who can breathe a sigh of relief because their children won’t be denied coverage for having pre-existing conditions; young people who at the height of the economic recession and amid today’s financial uncertainty have some peace of mind because they can stay on their parent’s health insurance until they’re twenty-six, and thousands of Granite Staters suffering from substance use disorders who are able to afford treatment for the first time due to Medicaid expansion. And the list goes on.”

She continued, “Over the years, I’ve worked to build on the progress made so the health care law works for all Americans. The provisions I recently included in the American Rescue Plan that address premium tax credits will expand coverage and reduce costs for millions of Americans. This is the most significant improvement since the ACA became the law of the land and it gets us closer to that goal of universal coverage for all Americans. But our work continues and I remain committed to working across the aisle to see that through. The American people demand it and the American people deserve it.”

Earlier this year, President Biden announced a Special Health Insurance Enrollment Period, which runs until May 15th. Consumers can go to HealthCare.gov to review their options and enroll in coverage. Four-out-of-five people enrolling in coverage can find plan with premiums of $10 or less per month after tax credits from the American Rescue Plan are included.

Shaheen has led efforts in Congress to protect and improve the ACA. Shaheen successfully included in the American Rescue Plan premium tax credit enhancement provisions from her legislation, the Improving Health Insurance Affordability Act, which will expand coverage to millions of Americans who are currently uninsured and reduce health care costs for millions of additional individuals who already have coverage, which is especially critical during the COVID-19 pandemic. Estimates indicate Shaheen’s provision will lead to a more than 37 percent reduction in monthly premium costs, on average. Senator Shaheen also spearheaded Senate Democrats’ proposal to make health care affordable and accessible for Americans during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Shaheen also led all 47 Senate Democrats on a Senate resolution that would reverse the Department of Justice’s decision to side with U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor’s ruling that would strike down the health care law. This health care sabotage could result in 133 million Americans losing protections for pre-existing conditions, millions more Americans without health insurance, soaring prescription drug costs for seniors and nearly 90,000 Granite Staters losing health care coverage. She introduced the Marketing and Outreach Restoration to Empower (MORE) Health Education Act of 2019 with Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Gary Peters (D-MI) to counteract the Trump administration’s sabotage efforts that slashed funding for health care enrollment advertising and marketing by 90 percent after Donald Trump took office. Shaheen, Baldwin and Warner called on the last administration to do more to prevent third-party web brokers from steering individuals toward junk health insurance plans that do not provide coverage of pre-existing conditions or essential health benefits.