Advocacy & Health Policy: Despite Legislative Victory for ACOG, Our Work is Not Done Yet

The months-long process aimed at repealing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and its landmark women’s health gains came to a dramatic end early Friday morning. On June 28, the Senate voted 51 to 49 against a bare-bones repeal bill that, if enacted, would have sent insurance markets into chaos and led to millions more uninsured individuals.

ACOG worked tirelessly to defeat this effort that would have turned back the clock on women's health. Republican Senators Susan Collins of Maine, John McCain of Arizona, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska crossed party lines to be the deciding votes that finally ended the deeply flawed partisan process of back-room deal making. As we've said from the beginning, the ACA is far from perfect, and it is now time for the US Congress to pursue a bipartisan reform effort that includes an open committee process and collaboration with the physician community.

From the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA), to the Senate version, titled the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), ACOG vociferously opposed efforts to drastically cut the Medicaid program, make coverage unaffordable for those with pre-existing conditions, and eliminate guaranteed maternity and contraceptive coverage.

How did we get here? ACOG's principles, rooted in the belief that no one should be worse off than they are today, are based on our long-standing commitment to coverage for all, and formed the basis for our 2017 advocacy. Nearly 600 of you joined us in March at ACOG's Congressional Leadership Conference in Washington, DC, where you delivered an important message in-person to your Members of Congress: Don't turn back the clock on women's health. You sent your legislators thousands of emails and made countless phone calls to make sure they knew that the physicians in their community were watching closely. We partnered with our colleagues from the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Physicians, American Osteopathic Association, and American Psychiatric Association to further amplify our voice. This is a victory that we all share.

But our work isn't done yet. ACOG stands ready to work with Republicans and Democrats in the US House of Representatives and Senate to put patients before politics and develop a common-sense approach to reducing health care costs and improving women’s health throughout the country. Get ready—there will be additional political attacks on women's health in the near future; stay engaged by visiting ACOG.org/advocacy for the latest information and ways to get involved.  

 

American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
409 12th Street SW, Washington, DC  20024-2188 | Mailing Address: PO Box 70620, Washington, DC 20024-9998