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ACS CAN expert testifies about need to preserve pre-existing condition protections in health care law

Preserving critical protections for cancer patients, survivors, and all those with pre-existing medical conditions will be the focus of a House Ways and Means Committee hearing today, Jan. 29. Committee members will hear testimony from Keysha Brooks-Coley, vice president for federal advocacy at the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN), along with that of other health policy experts and patients.

Keysha will share with the committee how the patient protections included in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have improved cancer patients and survivors' ability to access comprehensive health care and how recent regulatory changes, including the expansion of short-term plans, threaten to erode those protections.

"Expansion of these short-term plans does not help consumers, it puts them at increased risk," she says. "Unfortunately, there is a real possibility that many people – attracted by lower premiums – could find themselves with seriously inadequate coverage and greater out of pocket costs under these short-term plans. And with younger, healthier consumers being siphoned off, the insurance market will be destabilized leaving those who need comprehensive coverage with plans that are expensive or out of reach. We urge Congress to enact legislation to limit or prohibit the availability of these products."

Read Brooks-Coley's full testimony to the committee.

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