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December 19th, 2013
Grijalva Highlights Number of Arizonans Benefiting From Consumer Protections and Cost Savings Under the Affordable Care Act

Tucson, Ariz. – Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva today released a year-end review of how the Affordable Care Act has benefited Arizona residents. The Affordable Care Act has already given millions of uninsured Americans access to affordable health insurance, helped Americans with insurance improve their coverage, and established new consumer protections and cost savings. The review finds that, thanks to the Affordable Care Act:

·         1,406,000 individuals in Arizona on private insurance have gained coverage for at least one free preventive health care service, such as a mammogram, birth control, or an immunization in 2011 and 2012. In addition, an additional 434,800 people with Medicare in Arizona have received at least one free preventive service at no out-of-pocket cost.

·         The up to 2,794,000 individuals in Arizona with pre-existing conditions such as asthma, cancer or diabetes – including up to 411,000 children – will no longer have to worry about being denied coverage or charged higher prices because of their health status or history.

·         Approximately 1,269,000 Arizonians have gained expanded mental health and substance use disorder benefits and/or federal parity protections.

·         948,000 uninsured Arizonians will have new health insurance options through private health plans in the Marketplace or Medicaid.

·         As a result of new policies that make sure premium dollars work for the consumer, not just the insurer, in the past year insurance companies have sent rebates totaling $71 per family to approximately 424,000 consumers in Arizona.

·         In the first ten months of 2013, 59,600 seniors and people with disabilities in Arizona have saved an average of $813 on prescription medications as the health care law closes Medicare’s so-called “donut hole.”

·         69,000 young adults in Arizona have gained health insurance because they can now stay on their parents’ health plans until age 26.

·         Individuals no longer have to worry about having their health benefits cut off after they reach a lifetime limit on benefits, and starting in January, 2,091,000 Arizonians will no longer have to worry about annual limits, either.

·         Community Health Centers in Arizona have received $84,457,000 to provide primary care, establish new sites, and renovate existing centers to expand access to quality health care. Arizona has approximately 140 Community Health Center sites, which served about 423,000 individuals in 2012.

All information in the review comes from the Department of Health and Human Services.

“Republicans are still fighting for complete repeal instead of acknowledging the progress that’s been made and playing a constructive role in improving the law,” Grijalva said. “We can go back to the bad old days of arbitrary premiums, gender-based rate discrimination, expensive mammograms, and lots of healthy young people unable to get insurance without a trust fund. I don’t think the people of Southern Arizona want those days back. It’s time to face reality, stop refighting old political battles, and get together to help working families across Arizona. This law is already making health insurance more affordable and accessible, and that progress will continue in 2014 and well beyond.”

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