Allred Votes for Bill to Lower Health Care Costs and Expand Coverage for North Texans

June 29, 2020
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Colin Allred (TX-32) voted to pass the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act, a bill that would lower costs, further secure protections for people with pre-existing conditions, negotiate lower drug prices and expand coverage. Allred is a cosponsor.  

“The need to deliver results to lower costs and expand coverage is clearer than ever,” said Allred. “Every day North Texans experience immense uncertainty and hardship as this pandemic puts pressure on our health care system and our economy, and this bill is a good step toward fixing our system’s many issues. I hope both the White House and the Senate will put aside partisan politics, end the attacks on the Affordable Care Act and work with us to bring the American people the relief they need.” 

The bill’s passage in the House comes as the Administration continues to pursue a federal lawsuit that would repeal the entirety of the Affordable Care Act. Allred led the effort in the House to push back against the lawsuit. Last week, Allred joined House leaders to urge the Administration to drop the federal lawsuit

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act: 

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

  • Reverses the 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 efforts to give states waivers to undermine protections for people with pre-existing conditions and weaken standards for essential health benefits.

Expands coverage and pushes hold-out states, like Texas, 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.  
  • Includes a measure similar to one led by Congressman Marc Veasey (TX-33) and cosponsored by Allred that would incentivize states to expand Medicaid. Expanding Medicaid in Texas would result in more than 1 million Texans gaining coverage.

Lowers Americans’ health coverage costs

  • Expands tax credits to lower Americans’ Marketplace health insurance premiums and allow more middle-class individuals to qualify for subsidies – no person will pay more than 8.5 percent of their income on a silver plan in the Marketplaces.
  • 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.

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.

Negotiates lower prescription drug prices

  • Includes the drug price negotiation mechanism from the Elijah E. Cummings Lower Drug Costs Now Act, (H.R. 3), which would deliver immense savings to taxpayers, employers, workers and patients.