From the frontlines of the battle over healthcare reform

collected by Modern Healthcare Staff
Updated June 23
The Senate's proposed bill to replace Obamacare was immediately met with widespread dissent from members of both parties in Congress, healthcare providers, some insurers and perhaps most vehemently, patient advocacy groups. The Senate Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act would limit the law's financial assistance to families and individuals who couldn't afford healthcare, cap Medicaid spending, roll back the Medicaid expansion and potentially eliminate coverage for millions of Americans.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has to win support from at least 50 of the 52 Senate Republicans to pass the reconciliation bill, since no Democrats are expected to vote for it. Even some Republicans said they’d hesitate to support it.
Here are the thoughts, opinions and comments made on the BCRA.
Thomas J. Donohue
President and CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce

“We know that Obamacare is dangerously close to collapse as millions of Americans are left with fewer and fewer options for health insurance and urge senators to move forward and ultimately pass this legislation without delay.”

— via twitter

Bernard J. Tyson
Chairman and CEO, Kaiser Permanente

“We cannot support the current Senate draft bill, as it is clear that the changes to Medicaid and the reductions in subsidies for low-income people enrolled in the exchanges will lead to reduced coverage in our country. We acknowledge that the draft attempts to address the need for market stabilization measures, but these provisions are outweighed by the broader impact of the legislation.”

— via twitter

Chris Van Gorder
President and CEO, Scripps Health

“While the ACA certainly has its flaws and shortfalls, there is no question that this new proposal is a worse alternative. Just here in California, millions of people could lose their coverage. Of course, the future remains uncertain. Partisan attempts to pass national health care policy will always fail in the end because it will never be supported by the opposing party. American health care should not get caught up in a ping-pong match between political parties.”

— via twitter

Dr. Bruce Siegel
President and CEO, America’s Essential Hospitals

“For the hospitals that protect millions of Americans and their communities—our essential hospitals—this bill might even accelerate decisions by some to reduce services or close their doors.”

— via twitter

Cecile Richards
President, Planned Parenthood Federation of America

“There’s no question: this is the worst bill for women’s health in a generation. We must fight to #ProtectOurCare.”

— via twitter

Dr. Darrell Kirch
CEO, Association of American Medical Colleges

“As Congress has discussed repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, the AAMC has held steadfast that any replacement bill should at least maintain current levels of health coverage, not weaken Medicaid, and be the result of a deliberate and transparent process. The bill that came out of the Senate today meets none of those principles.”

— via twitter

Ceci Connolly
President and CEO, the Alliance of Community Health Plans

“We appreciate that the Senate has funded the vitally important CSR subsidies through 2019 and is providing some amount of market certainty. ... We remain troubled by the prospect of millions of people losing coverage under the Senate bill, particularly the working families who will be significantly impacted by the proposed changes to Medicaid.”

— via twitter

Steve Wojcik
Vice president of public policy, National Business Group on Health

“The draft eliminates other taxes that would raise the cost of coverage and the health account provisions would make it easier for people to pay their out-of-pocket health care expenses.”

— via twitter

Margaret A. Murray
CEO, the Association for Community Affiliated Plans

“The BCRA moves in a dangerous and harmful direction for poor, aged and disabled Americans and the health plans and providers that serve them—whether it is phasing out Medicaid coverage for millions of Americans, threatening the viability of the Medicaid system through underfunded per capita allotments, or failing to protect the integrity of actuarially sound rate-setting practices that underpin Medicaid managed care.”

— via twitter

Rick Pollack
President and CEO, American Hospital Association

“Medicaid cuts of this magnitude are unsustainable and will increase costs to individuals with private insurance.”

— via twitter

Daniel Steingart
Vice president, Moody's Investors Service

“Under the proposed Senate bill, both for-profit and not-for-profit hospitals would face weaker demand for services and higher rates of uncompensated care expense, with the most significant impact on the sector occurring after 2020 when the changes to federal Medicaid funding are phased in.”

— via twitter

Barack Obama
Former President

“The Senate bill, unveiled today, is not a health care bill. It’s a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America.”

— via twitter

Donald J. Trump
President

“I am very supportive of the Senate #HealthcareBill. Look forward to making it really special! Remember, ObamaCare is dead.”

— via twitter

Sen. Rob Portman
R-Ohio

“I continue to have real concerns about the Medicaid policies in this bill, especially those that impact drug treatment at a time when Ohio is facing an opioid epidemic.”

— via twitter

James Gelfand
Senior vice president of health policy, ERISA Industry Committee

“The Senate’s healthcare bill lays out a path to fully repeal the 40% Cadillac excise tax on employer-sponsored health insurance. … Full and final repeal of the Cadillac tax is essential to ensuring a healthy future for the employer-sponsored health insurance system.”

— via twitter

Sen. Patty Murray
D-Wash

“It has been so secret and closely guarded that not even the 13 male senators who made up the so-called working group could comment on what was in it.”

— via twitter