BCRA is bad for Iowans

Passing the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) in its current form would be a mistake.

BCRA goes beyond its stated purpose of “repealing and replacing” the ACA by calling for deep cuts to Medicaid and eliminating Medicaid Expansion, which covers more than 620,000 Iowans — children, pregnant women, persons with disabilities, the elderly and low-income adults. Nationwide, the bill would represent a major step backward, leading to a loss of coverage for 22 million Americans by 2026.

The bill would harm low-income patients and underserved communities receiving care at community health centers (CHCs). CHCs see all patients regardless of their ability to pay or whether patients have private insurance, Medicaid, Medicare or are uninsured. Medicaid is critical to CHCs, covering over 45 percent of our patients. CHCs are cost effective providers serving 13.6 percent of all Medicaid beneficiaries, but representing only 1.21 percent of Iowa’s total Medicaid expenditures. Medicaid Expansion’s impact on Iowa CHCs has resulted in a 65 percent increase in the number of Medicaid patients and a 22 percent decrease in the number of uninsured patients. CHCs provide more innovative services including the ability to invest in and expand cost effective behavioral health services. Every day we see the difference that having coverage makes for our patients — for their health, for their financial security and for their peace of mind.

We call on the Senate to vote no on BCRA or if the bill moves forward, include amendments to protect our ability to care for vulnerable Iowans.