House ACA Repeal Vote Gets Muted Response from Healthcare Lobbyists

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media , January 21, 2011

By Thursday, the AMA was back on the Hill, lobbying for tort reform, which is expected to get a more sympathetic hearing now that Republicans control the House Judiciary Committee.

Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman for America's Health Insurance Plans, didn't pick a side on the vote when he said: "We continue to believe that changes are needed to the health care reform law in order to minimize coverage disruptions and cost increases for families and employers."

Instead, Zirkelbach reiterated AHIP's ongoing concerns about the Affordable Care Act. "While the new law will bring more people into the system, major provisions will raise costs and disrupt the coverage people have today, including: new taxes on small businesses health insurance; age rating restrictions that will cause premiums to skyrocket for younger workers; and massive Medicare Advantage cuts that will result in higher premiums, reduced benefits, and fewer choices for seniors." Zirkelbach said AHIP would "continue to work with members of Congress from both parties to address these issues." 

Wes Metheny, senior vice president of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) didn't even mention the vote in a lengthy press release.

"A core principle that continues to guide our advocacy efforts is that all Americans should have access to high-quality and affordable health care coverage, services and treatments – a notion that has historically enjoyed broad bipartisan support. Additionally, we believe it is critically important that public policies foster future medical discovery and innovation and promote U.S.-based biopharmaceutical jobs," Metheny said.

John Commins is a senior editor with HealthLeaders Media.

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