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Administration Challenge to ACA’s Pre-Existing Condition Protections at Odds With Public Opinion

A federal court is considering a challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) protections for people with pre-existing conditions that a number of state attorneys general have filed and the Trump Administration has chosen not to defend. But the public—including most Republicans—want those protections preserved.

A recent Kaiser Family Foundation tracking poll finds that 72-75% of Americans say that it is “very important” to keep provisions that stop insurance companies from denying coverage or charging more based on medical history. Over 55% of Republicans said it was very important to do so. It is also the 90thtime that the foundation has asked about the public’s opinion of the ACA generally, and this month 50% view the law favorably, while 40% view it unfavorably.

The report also finds that more than 40% of Americans are “very worried” that they or a family member will lose coverage or have to pay more if the court invalidates the ACA protections, and that nearly 60% are “very concerned” about increases in healthcare costs and that those costs top their own affordability concerns. Two-thirds of people said that they are at least “somewhat” worried about affording an unexpected medical bill, and about half say the same about deductibles and drug costs—higher than the number worried about transportation, utility or rent/mortgage payments.

The poll also found that health care is among the top issues voters wanted to hear candidates discuss ahead of the November midterm elections. Nearly a third of people said that health care is the most important issue they will consider in making their voting decisions, and they most want to discuss health care costs.

Read Medicare Rights take on the court case.

Read more about what is at stake.

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