LOS ANGELES – December 18, 2017 – Today, Louise McCarthy, President and CEO of the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County (CCALAC) released the following statement on the potential effects of the tax bill on healthcare access.
“Caught between a rock and a hard place, this week California Republicans will vote for a tax bill that will have detrimental effects on Californians, in particular our working poor and middle class,” McCarthy said.
The House is anticipated to vote tomorrow on the tax legislation. If it passes, the Senate will vote on Wednesday. The House and Senate have passed different versions of a tax reform bill, and have just released the final text.
Disguised as a tax bill, this health bill will have a profound effect on the health and well-being of Americans for a generation. It includes the individual mandate repeal, which eliminates the Affordable Care Act’s individual health insurance mandate, leading to the destabilization of the individual health insurance market. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects that this change alone would increase individual premiums by 10% a year and cause as many as 13 million more Americans to be uninsured by 2027. In California, the number of uninsured would increase by an estimated 1.7 million people.
Additionally, there will be possible forced cuts to Medicare in that it could force automatic sequester cuts resulting from the addition of over $1 trillion to the national debt.
In the upcoming year, Republicans are also expected to move to overhauling Medicaid (Medi-Cal in California) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (also known as SNAP federally and CalFresh in California), as well as other programs that provide assistance for working Americans and their families.
On a broader scale, the tax bill will have indirect health effects and would exacerbate inequality and worsen health disparities in this country. Under almost all analyses, low- and middle-income families would pay more in taxes, making it even more difficult to pay for health care, food, housing, child care, and education. These inequities can and will lead to poor health outcomes and erode both the economic and social stability of our communities.
“It’s disappointing to see California’s representatives vote against the interest of their constituents and the interests of their state,” remarked McCarthy.
THE COMMUNITY CLINIC ASSOCIATION OF LOS ANGELES COUNTY (CCALAC) is the largest regional association of community clinics and health centers in California. Founded in 1994, CCALAC has 63 members that operate over 350 clinic sites throughout LA County. CCALAC is dedicated to serving and representing the interests of its member clinics as providers of quality health care, including medical, dental and pharmacy services. For more information about CCALAC, visit www.ccalac.org or call (213) 201-6500.
Contact: Elaiza Torralba, Communications Specialist, (213) 201-6529
Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County
700 S. Flower Street, Suite 3150, Los Angeles, CA 90017