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AAN Issues Statement on AHCA

May 4, 2017

The House of Representatives passed the amended American Health Care Act (AHCA) by a slim majority. Although the amended legislation has not been fully analyzed or scored by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), it is clear that the proposed changes jeopardize protection for individuals with pre-existing conditions and do not fully address the AAN's concerns about access to health insurance coverage. The AAN joins other medical groups in opposing the legislation as it conflicts with our Principles for Health Care Delivery. The AAN will actively monitor the legislation as it advances to the Senate, and will continue to advocate for amendments that ensure Americans with neurologic conditions have access to the neurologists they need. 

March 24, 2017

The House of Representatives leadership avoided a vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA) after it became clear that the bill was not supported by a majority of the chamber. It is unclear whether House leadership will propose an alternative version of this legislation, but if they do, the AAN will continue to advocate for significant reforms to better align any proposal with the AAN's Principles for Health Care Delivery. This includes ensuring that Americans with neurologic conditions have access to the neurologists they need.

March 17, 2017

Dear Members of the AAN,

Last November, I wrote to you saying that the American Academy of Neurology would advocate for neurology and the patients we care for as changes to the Affordable Care Act were considered by Congress. Toward that end, the AAN adopted Principles for Health Care Delivery to guide us as new proposals were considered. Foremost in our principles is the need to preserve access to high-quality health care. After careful review of the American Health Care Act (AHCA), we have concluded this legislation does not do enough to ensure continued access to health insurance coverage for millions of Americans. Further, this proposal does not weigh in on other priorities such as the value of cognitive care, medical liability reform, easing practice burdens, and securing access to care in all settings, although these provisions may be addressed in subsequent legislation.  

While encouraged by the retention of provisions to protect those with pre-existing conditions, estimates of drastic reductions of individuals covered by health insurance conflict with the AAN's principles for health care delivery. As such, the AAN cannot support the American Health Care Act as currently written. We look forward to working with Congress to enact legislation to ensure that Americans with neurologic conditions have health insurance and increased access to the neurologists they need in addition to meeting the goals outlined in the AAN's principles.

Look for additional context and analysis of developments in Capitol Hill Report, emailed to you the second and fourth Monday of every month.

Sincerely,

Terrence L. Cascino, MD, FAAN
President, American Academy of Neurology

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