Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Tell your Senators to support individuals living with Alzheimer’s now!




The Senate may vote as early as Wednesday [July 26] on legislation that, if signed into law, would have far reaching, damaging repercussions for those with Alzheimer’s and their families. The legislation could reduce support for millions of cognitively impaired elderly who rely on Medicaid services.

Tell your Senators to support individuals living with Alzheimer’s now!

Alzheimer’s is progressive and fatal. In its later stages, those who have it require an extraordinarily high level of hands-on care. Today, more than 1 in 4 seniors living with Alzheimer's and other dementias are on Medicaid. It is the only public program that covers the nursing home stays that most people with dementia require in the late stages of the disease. Medicaid also covers home and community-based services which are critical for people in the early and middle stages of the disease.

We are also concerned that legislation under consideration would eliminate pre-existing condition safeguards for individuals with Alzheimer’s and other dementias to have continued access to affordable health care. This is critical for the estimated 200,000 Americans who have younger-onset Alzheimer’s as they progress through the stages of the disease while under age 65.

Until the millions of Americans living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias have access to effective treatments and means of prevention, they must have access to the effective care and support resources that the disease requires.

Please urge your Senators to address these huge challenges to some of their most vulnerable constituents.


Alzheimer's Association National Office
225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601
© 2017 Alzheimer's Association. All rights reserved.
800.272.3900 | alz.org®
 



Dear US Senator...

As you consider changes to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148) via the Better Care Reconciliation Act, I urge you to ensure that the legislation contains the strongest provisions possible to address the particular challenges and concerns of the millions of Americans living with Alzheimer's and other dementias.

More than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's and, without significant action, as many as 16 million Americans will have Alzheimer's by 2050. Today, another person develops the disease every 66 seconds; by 2050, someone in the United States will develop the disease every 33 seconds. This explosive growth will cause Alzheimer's costs to increase from an estimated $259 billion in 2017 to $1.1 trillion in 2050 (in 2017 dollars).

It is essential to preserve access to quality care through Medicaid coverage for people living with Alzheimer's and other dementias. Medicaid is the only public program that covers the long-term nursing home stays that most people with dementia require in the late stages of the disease. Medicaid also covers home and community-based services which are critical for people with dementia, particularly in the early and middle stages of the disease. More than one in four seniors with Alzheimer's and other dementias are currently on Medicaid. With the number of people with the disease set to nearly triple in the coming decades, it is crucial that Congress ensures continued access to Medicaid services for this vulnerable population that has long relied on them.

I also urge you to protect affordable access to health care for individuals with pre-existing conditions like Alzheimer's and other dementias. This is especially important to the 200,000 Americans under age 65 who have younger-onset Alzheimer's.

As your constituent, I urge you to ensure that any proposal to reform the health care system preserves access to affordable, quality health care for people living with Alzheimer's and other dementias.

Sincerely,



1 comment:

  1. July 27, 2017

    Mr. Glen Brown

    Dear Mr. Brown:

    Thank you for contacting me about the Republican health care repeal bill, also known as the American Health Care Act (H.R. 1628). I appreciate hearing from you and share your concerns.

    Congressional Republicans unveiled their proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The American Health Care Act (AHCA), introduced by Representative Diane Black of Tennessee, would have ended Medicaid as we know it, threw people off their existing health insurance plans, increased costs for middle-income families and seniors—all while providing a huge tax cut to the wealthy and jeopardizing the long-term solvency of the Medicare program.

    After overwhelming opposition to the Senate amended version of the bill, on July 17, 2017, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced the Senate would no longer consider the repeal and immediately replace legislation. According to Leader McConnell, the Senate will instead vote on a measure to repeal the Affordable Care Act with a two-year stable transition period to another health care system, to be determined at a later date.

    The ACA has helped millions of families. The rate of increase in health care and Medicare spending is at its lowest level in 50 years. Seniors are saving money on prescription drug costs, and hospital readmission rates are dropping. Because of the ACA, an additional 650,000 Illinoisans are now receiving health coverage through our state's expanded Medicaid program.

    By cutting billions from the Medicaid program over the next decade, the Republican replacement plan would have put health coverage for every single one of these people in jeopardy. The replacement plan would have threatened health care for an estimated one million Illinoisans and weakened protections for people with pre-existing conditions by giving states the power to waive essential health benefits and discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions by charging more or denying coverage.

    While I believe that there are some common sense changes we can make to our health care system, the destructive results from the Senate amended version of AHCA and a "repeal now and replace later" measure are too high a price to pay. A full repeal would be a step backward for our nation, especially when it is unclear what a replacement plan would be. I strongly oppose any efforts to repeal our health care law and will continue fighting on behalf of Illinoisans who would be hurt by repeal.

    This is a watershed moment for all of Congress to work together to create a sustainable health care system that works for everyone. I am willing to work with any of my colleagues who are committed to prioritizing expanded access to quality health care while controlling costs. I will continue to work with my staff and health care experts across Illinois to determine the best way to control health care costs and deliver high quality care to Illinoisans and all Americans. I also will keep your views in mind as Congress continues this health care debate.

    Thank you again for contacting me. I appreciate your support as we move forward through this uncertain time. Please know that I will continue to fight against these dangerous proposals and work in the best interest of the American people, especially Illinoisans. Please feel free to keep in touch.


    Sincerely,

    Richard J. Durbin
    United States Senator

    RJD/jw

    ReplyDelete