Rep. Cisneros Votes to Pass Legislative Package to Make Healthcare and Prescription Drugs More Affordable

June 29, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC - Today, Representative Gilbert R. Cisneros, Jr. (CA-39) voted to pass the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act, a legislative package that will provide much needed relief by making healthcare and prescription drugs more affordable. The legislation also expands access to healthcare, strengthens protections for people with pre-existing conditions, reduces racial and ethnic health coverage disparities, and reverses the Trump Administration’s harmful actions to sabotage the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

“Our country is in an unprecedented health crisis. We cannot sit on the sidelines and allow the Trump Administration and Republican leaders to overturn the Affordable Care Act. Too many families in the 39th District and across the country rely on the ACA for healthcare and pre-existing condition protections,” said Rep. Cisneros. “Today, the House is taking an important step to expand and strengthen healthcare, while also lowering costs. I will keep fighting to ensure residents of 39th District have access to quality, affordable healthcare.”

Lowers Americans’ health coverage costs

  • Expands tax credits to lower Americans’ Marketplace health insurance premiums and allow more working-class individuals and families to qualify for subsidies. For the first time, no person will pay more than 8.5 percent of their income on a silver plan in the Marketplaces:
    • A family of four earning $40,000 would save nearly $1,600 in premiums each year.
    • A 64-year-old earning $57,420 would save more than $8,700 in premiums each year.
    • A single adult with an income of $31,900 would see premiums cut in half.
    • An adult earning $19,140 would see premiums cut to zero, saving $800 dollars a year.
  • Ensures that families who don’t have an offer of affordable family coverage from an employer can qualify for subsidies in the Marketplaces.
  • Provides funding for reinsurance initiatives to further lower premiums, deductibles, and other out-of-pocket costs.

Negotiates lower prescription drug prices

  • Includes the transformational drug price negotiation mechanism from the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, (H.R. 3), which delivers immense savings to taxpayers, employers, workers, and patients by preventing Americans from having to pay more for our medicines than pharmaceutical companies charge for the same drugs overseas. 

Expands coverage and pushes hold-out states to adopt Medicaid expansion

  • Presses Medicaid expansion hold-out states to reconsider by renewing the ACA’s original expanded federal matching for states that adopt the Medicaid expansion and progressively reducing administrative FMAP for those who continue to refuse. More than 4.8 million Americans have been cruelly excluded from coverage because states have refused to expand Medicaid.   
  • Funds critical federal and state efforts to increase health coverage enrollment, educate consumers of their healthcare rights, and help individuals navigate the health insurance system.
  • Delivers funding for states who want to establish their own state-based Marketplaces.

Combats inequity in health coverage faced by communities of color

  • Fights the maternal mortality epidemic by requiring states to extend Medicaid or CHIP coverage to new mothers for 1-year post-partum.
  • Protects vulnerable populations from losing health coverage by ensuring that Medicaid and CHIP beneficiaries receive a full 12 months of coverage once enrolled, protecting them from interruptions due to fluctuations in their income throughout the year.
  • Improves Medicaid beneficiaries’ access to primary care physicians, by reauthorizing the ACA’s increased payments to primary care physicians who treat Medicaid recipients.

Cracks down on junk plans and strengthens protections for people with pre-existing conditions

  • Reverses the Trump Administration’s expansion of junk health insurance plans that do not provide coverage for essential medical treatments and drugs and that are allowed to discriminate against people with pre-existing medical conditions.
  • Curtails the Trump Administration’s efforts to give states waivers to undermine protections for people with pre-existing conditions and weaken standards for essential health benefits.