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Health Team

Health care debate rages anew as Republican propose Obamacare replacement

Posted March 18
Updated 12:51 p.m. Sunday

One of President Donald Trump’s main campaign promises was to replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Last week, Republicans and Trump released the American Health Care Act to replace Obamacare. There has been a lot of controversy if Obamacare actually helps people.

Kim Jones, an advocate of Obamacare, said she would be dead without it.

She said, "I fell and hit my head on concrete and the ambulance came and got me took me to a local hospital to check and see if there was a fracture. There wasn’t, but they found a tumor in my brain."

Jones was uninsured for 10 years prior before the accident and still waited a year until she was able to get insurance.

"I realized I had fallen through the cracks,” Jones said.

The tumor was pressing on her optic nerve and could have caused her to go blind.

She eventually signed up for and Affordable Care Act policy and was able to afford the doctors she needed to remove her tumor. The doctors soon removed every piece of the tumor in her brain successfully.

Jones is one of about a half million people in North Carolina who got insurance under Obamacare and worry they'll lose it if the Republican plan passes.

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Republicans have assured people that those already insured will still have a safety net and will not get the rug pulled from under them.

"Our plan is not about forcing people to buy expensive, one-size-fits-all coverage. It is about giving people more choices and better access to a plan they want and can afford. When people have more choices, costs go down,” Ryan said.

Health_Overhaul_Second_Act_99412 GOP's health plan could cost older, rural NC residents thousands each year

Brendon Riley, who is a policy analyst for the North Carolina Justice Center, said, "The changes proposed in Congress are life and death in North Carolina."

Riley argues that the bill will not help North Carolinians at large. He says that the new health care bill would put vulnerable communities, the poor and the elderly at risk of not being able to afford health care.

The Congressional Business Office analysis appears to agree with Riley. It found that the American Health Care Act would see about 14 million people lose their insurance coverage within a decade.

Tom Price, secretary of Health and Human Services, says the C.B.O. did not look at the whole document before making their predictions of the new healthcare.

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