As a health care professional caring for medically underserved children and families here in Arizona, I am especially concerned about Senator Barto’s call for continued efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
The ACA made affordable, quality health care coverage possible for millions of Americans, including my own patients. My patients with preexisting health conditions, like Anna, a 17-year-old female diagnosed with lupus, no longer faced denial of coverage or more expensive plans. And Roger, an 11-year-old whose parents lived from paycheck to paycheck but still made too much to qualify for Medicaid prior to its expansion. Women like Luna, a 19-year-old college student on her parents’ health plan, were ensured access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services including STI testing, well-woman’s exams, and contraception as essential benefits.
The ACA ensured that all Americans had access to affordable and comprehensive health coverage regardless of preexisting conditions or where in the country they lived. The Senate has the opportunity to strengthen our health care system by preserving and building upon the gains of the Affordable Care Act. For my patients in Arizona and for my colleagues’ patients across the country, I urge Senator Barto to reconsider her stance on the ACA. The future of our nation’s health hangs in the balance.
Dr. Veenod L. Chulani
Medical director, Quality of Care and Child Safety American Academy of Pediatrics-Arizona Chapter
The views expressed in guest commentaries are those of the author and are not the views of the Arizona Capitol Times.