What the House Vote to Repeal Obamacare Means for Planned Parenthood
Congress Is a Step Closer to Repealing the Affordable Care Act and ‘Defunding’ Planned Parenthood. Here’s What the Bill Actually Does, and How to Fight Back.
On May 4, the U.S. House voted to pass the worst bill for women’s health in a generation: the American Health Care Act (AHCA). This bill not only seeks to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), but also to “defund” Planned Parenthood by blocking Medicaid patients from care at its health centers.
As the bill heads to the Senate, here’s what it actually does — and what it doesn’t do.
What Thursday’s Vote Did NOT Do
It didn’t become law. The ACA repeal bill passed the House by a narrow margin, and now it faces an uphill battle in the Senate. We can expect more changes to the bill that will impact women’s health.
It didn’t close Planned Parenthood. All Planned Parenthood health centers are open as usual, and staff are doing what they’ve always done: getting up in the morning; opening the health center doors; and providing high-quality, affordable health care to all people who need it. That includes patients who rely on Medicaid coverage.
It didn’t cancel your insurance. The benefits of the ACA are still here for you, even if you’re 26 or younger and on your parents’ plan. In fact, the majority of people can still purchase a plan for $75 or less. If you have health care coverage, it is still in effect until there is an actual change in the law, which takes time. So, make your medical appointments, and get the care you deserve and are entitled to under the law.
What the AHCA Threatens to Do to Women’s Health
In particular, the AHCA would:
Take away health coverage for 24 million people
“Defund” Planned Parenthood by blocking people who rely on Medicaid from accessing preventive care at its health centers — including birth control, cancer screenings, and STD testing and treatment
Reduce access to no-cost preventive services, including birth control
End protections that keep insurers from charging people with pre-existing conditions unaffordable rates — allowing insurance companies to once again charge people tens of thousands of dollars a month because they had cancer
Impose a nationwide ban on private insurance coverage of abortion
Undermine Essential Health Benefits — including maternity coverage and prescription drugs, which disproportionately affect women.
Gut the Medicaid program, which approximately 1 in 4 women of reproductive age rely on to access no-cost, critical reproductive health care (such as birth control, lifesaving cancer screenings, and maternity care)
4 Ways to Fight Back Now
Infuriated? You’re not alone. Here are the top three ways to stand up for health care and stand with Planned Parenthood right now.
#1: Call Your Senators This is the most important way to take action right now. Use our easy online form to call your U.S. senators. We’ll give you a script so you can tell them to protect health care and stand with Planned Parenthood.
#2: Tag Your Senators on Facebook Do you notice when somebody tags you on Facebook? Chances are, your answer is “yes” — and that goes for your senators, too. Our simple form automatically tags your senators and gives you time to edit the post.
#3: Tweet at Your Senators If you have Twitter, take a moment to tweet at your senators. Our easy-to-use form automatically finds your senators’ handles. It also gives you a sample tweet if you don’t want to write your own.
#4: Tweet at Reps who Voted Against Women’s Health Click on the link above and scroll own for our list of representatives who voted in favor of this dangerous bill. If you see your House member, tell them you will not forget that they stripped access to care — and will not forgive.
#TechStandsWithPP: A message from Tumblr’s CEO and Planned Parenthood’s president
When Planned Parenthood was founded a century ago, it was illegal to even hand out information about birth control. Thanks to generations of brave women and men who formed secret societies, challenged unjust laws, and started Planned Parenthood health centers in their own towns, we’ve come a long way since. Millions of people, regardless of income or insurance coverage, now have access to birth control, cancer screenings, and STI testing and treatment. Each year, Planned Parenthood proudly provides health information to nearly 70 million people online and 1 million people in classrooms and communities across the country. Today, America is at a 30-year low in unintended pregnancy and a historic low in teen pregnancy.
But all of that progress is a reminder of how much women and men in America now stand to lose. Extreme politicians at every level of government are doing everything they can to block millions of people from coming to Planned Parenthood, deny access to affordable health care, and roll back women’s rights over their own bodies. We are facing a national health disaster, especially in our most vulnerable communities.
That’s why we’re calling on the tech industry to join Tumblr in standing with Planned Parenthood and standing up for access to health care.
A 100-year-old health care provider and the platform powering 335 million blogs may seem like an unlikely pair. But over the last few years, Tumblr and Planned Parenthood have teamed up to provide information and organize communities in support of reproductive rights. We’re proud of all we’ve accomplished together and with overwhelming support from the Tumblr community.
Technology has become instrumental in the fight for fairness and equality across a range of issues. It has the power to influence public debate, mobilize communities, and — most importantly — offer creative solutions to help people receive better care, no matter where they live or who they are. Finally, the tech industry owes its success to the brilliant people it employs and the communities it serves — and we cannot take their health for granted.
It won’t be easy, but doing nothing isn’t an option when lives are at stake. We need to work together to break down barriers to care and information for the millions of people desperate to take ownership of their sexual and reproductive health, and tackle disparities in health care access and outcomes.
Now is the time to be vocal, visible, and active in your support of Planned Parenthood — starting with the #TechStandsWithPP hashtag to share stories about how Planned Parenthood has touched your life, or the life of anyone you know. Call on your co-workers and peers to do the same.
In health care, education, and nearly every industry, we’re doing things that would have been unthinkable a century ago. Think of all we can achieve together in the decades to come if we combine the creativity, innovation, and energy of the tech community with Planned Parenthood’s commitment to helping people everywhere — no matter what.
i’ve been very displeased with events recently. Just because a certain type of heathcare isn’t directly related to everyone doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be included. You wouldn’t say that insulin shouldn’t be covered because not everyone has diabetes right? well the same goes for birth control(and its numerous reasons for use) and women’s healthcare in general.
BREAKING: The Trump administration just officially issued a new rule rolling back birth control coverage for over 62 MILLION women. This is a perfect execution of Donald Trump’s passions: controlling women and robbing people of healthcare.
i would just like to point out that the recent conversation surrounding the male birth control trials isn’t just “lol weak men can’t deal with side effects” it’s the fact that when they were testing hormonal birth control for women in the 50s & 60s, the side effects were much worse, and the women who participated in them, mostly in puerto rico, were not told about the side effects or that the drug was experimental
and THEN when women dropped out, they started using incarcerated women as their guinea pigs, and then despite the fact that some scientists who participated in the original trials were like “uh i don’t think this is actually good, it’s making a lot of these women sick,” the pharmaceutical industry & fda were like ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ and approved it for the general population anyways, without really warning women about the potential for all these negative side effects
and THEN researchers basically ceased to do any type of research on side effects like depression and decreased libido for 50 years, despite the fact that women were still complaining about them, and because there was no “hard evidence” of these side effects, a lot of doctors basically just assumed women were exaggerating or making it up. and that continued until the first major studyof depression in women who take hormonal contraceptives was released just. this. year.
Let’s be crystal clear: The Senate Republican healthcare repeal bill is a savage, immoral attack on women and the health and well-being of hundreds of millions of Americans. Take action by calling your Senator: 1-866-665-4470