WASHINGTON — To mark the first year of President Joe Biden’s presidency, Health Care for America Now Executive Director Margarida Jorge released the following statement:
“President Biden has taken meaningful steps forward to improve access to affordable healthcare for millions of people and to reduce disparities in health outcomes exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, a public health crisis that he inherited and has effectively worked to combat through a variety of actions. In contrast to his predecessor, who sowed fear, confusion and misinformation about COVID, President Biden has brought calm and common sense to pandemic relief and made major investments in testing, vaccine distribution, public education and expanded basic medical care under the ACA and Medicaid that saved millions of lives.
President Biden’s policies provided new coverage and discounted insurance premiums for millions of people who were struggling to access health care. More than 4.6 million people gained coverage through the ACA in 2021, including nearly three million who enrolled during the Special Enrollment Period. American families are saving an average of $2,400 a year on their health insurance premiums since the President took office. Under President Biden, a new law banning surprise medical bills has been implemented that will protect patients from unexpected and unfair medical debt. The Biden Administration has also stepped up on reproductive healthcare, extending Medicaid coverage for new moms and challenging the abortion ban in Texas that takes away people’s basic rights to decide if and when to start a family.
President Biden continues to press for more reforms that would address the struggle that millions of Americans still face in affording the healthcare they need to take care of themselves and their families in the coming years and improve health outcomes for millions. And, he is pressing for the wealthiest individuals and corporations that have continued to rake in massive profits over the course of the pandemic to pay a more fair share of taxes in order to pay for improvements in the system that benefit everyone. House and Senate Democrats should unite with the President to build on the success of his first year by passing Build Back Better legislation now to lower drug prices, reduce out of pocket healthcare costs, close the Medicaid coverage gap and permanently reduce premiums.”