March 16, 2017
House Budget Committee Advances the American Health Care Act
This morning the House Budget Committee voted 19-17 to advance the American Health Care Act (AHCA), Republican’s legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
This marks the third key congressional committee to advance ACA repeal and replace legislation. Last week, both the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Ways and Means Committee voted to approve the AHCA.
Today’s vote comes in the wake of the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) March 13 report that found that the Republican bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would result in 14 million more uninsured Americans by 2018 and 24 million more uninsured Americans by 2026. The CBO projects that the AHCA would also reduce the federal deficit by $337 billion over ten years.
During the House Budget Committee meeting, three Republican members, all members of the House Freedom Caucus, cast “no” votes. Representative Dave Brat (R-VA-7) announced ahead of today’s vote that he would not support the legislation. Representatives Mark Sanford (R-SC-1) and Gary Palmer (R-AL-6) had not yet voiced how they would vote. All Democratic members voted against the legislation.
Next week, the House Rules Committee will establish the rules under which the legislation can be considered. Following the Rules Committee action, the legislation will move to the House floor for consideration by the U.S. House of Representatives.
ASA’s Ad Hoc Committee on Health Care Reform is closely monitoring this legislation to determine any possible impacts on physician anesthesiologists and their patients.