AAMC CEO Dr. Darrell Kirch urges Trump to maintain coverage after ACA repeal

If President-elect Donald Trump and Congress repeal the ACA, additional legislation should be passed simultaneously to protect health insurance coverage, Association of American Medical Colleges President and CEO Darrell Kirch, MD, wrote in two letters sent Friday to Mr. Trump and Congressional leaders. 

The two letters call on the Trump administration to commit to maintaining or improving healthcare coverage under an ACA alternative, protecting Medicaid expansion and collaborating with the healthcare industry to develop an ACA replacement. However, what most concerns the organization is that a replacement for the ACA would be delayed and enacted after the repeal of the healthcare reform law, Dr. Kirch wrote. 

"[T]he AAMC is concerned by reports that the administration and Congress may quickly take up an effort to repeal the ACA, in the absence of enacting a comprehensive alternative to guaranteeing that high-quality, affordable health insurance remains available to all Americans currently covered," Dr. Kirch wrote in both letters. "While there is talk of delayed implementation of any repeal, we think the uncertainty associated with such an approach is untenable, not only for the individuals currently covered, but also for the entire healthcare system." 

This would be disruptive to patients and providers, according to Dr. Kirch. In particular, Dr. Kirch highlighted the potential negative impact of a repeal without a concurrent replacement on academic medical centers. "Teaching hospitals already are under extreme financial pressure as they struggle to provide patient care while simultaneously supporting research and education; they cannot weather unstable times when revenue from Medicaid and individuals who are insured through the exchanges is uncertain," Dr. Kirch wrote. 

The AAMC looks forward to working with the Trump administration to advance healthcare delivery and medical research, Dr. Kirch concluded. 

Read Dr. Kirch's statement and find links to the letters here


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