Supreme Court Ruling is Good News for People Living with HIV/AIDS, Says AIDS United
Statement of Victor Barnes, Interim President and CEO
WASHINGTON, D.C. June 28, 2012 - "AIDS United applauds the Supreme Court for upholding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and maintaining the path to an AIDS-free America. The ACA will strongly benefit the 1.2 million people living with HIV/AIDS in our country. The provisions rightly upheld by today's decision will help millions of people gain access to affordable health insurance markets including subsidized health insurance for many uninsured and underinsured individuals, expand Medicaid coverage to all people whose income is at or below 133% of the federal poverty level (subject to state participation), and expand patient protections that prevent discrimination and denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions. Tens of thousands of people living with HIV will now have greater access to prevention, treatment and care including life saving drugs.
"Other important provisions that benefit people living with HIV/AIDS include rules that prohibit insurers from denying coverage to people living with HIV or other pre-existing conditions, and setting annual and lifetime caps on the dollar value of insurance coverage. Young adults under 26 will continue to have the option of coverage under parental insurance plans. Access to drug coverage and preventive benefits will improve. AIDS United, through its grantmaking, technical assistance and advocacy initiatives will continue to support nearly 400 community-based organizations and partnership networks to use health care reform to help people with HIV/AIDS connect to life-saving prevention, care and treatment.
"AIDS United is concerned that the Supreme Court allows states to opt out of the needed Medicaid expansion. To end HIV in the United States, the states should accept the planned Medicaid expansion. Now that it is clear that the Act is Constitutional, AIDS United calls on lawmakers in the states and in Congress to pull together and fully implement it.
"The end to HIV in the United States is in our sight. The Supreme Court's ruling upholds the ACA'S pivotal provisions that keep us on the course that has been outlined by the first-ever National HIV/AIDS Strategy and by the significant treatment and prevention advances that we've seen over the last year.
It is time to move forward. AIDS United will work with our allies against all new efforts to repeal or weaken the law of the land. Now it is up to Congress and the states. AIDS United calls for an end to partisan bickering about the ACA, and urges swift, decisive movement forward to implement the most important legislation ever passed for people living with HIV/AIDS in the United States.” ###