If you are still wondering why women across the country are troubled by the American Health Care Act (ACHA), this photo might be enough to answer your questions.
President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence met with the members of House Freedom Caucus at the White House to decide the fate of the Republican replacement for Affordable Care Act (ACA). To mark the momentous occasion, Pence proudly shared a photo from the meeting on Twitter, drawing immediate attention from the Democrats and women’s rights groups.
The image, posted above, shows a bunch of old white men sitting around a table discussing if the new health care bill, aptly known as Trumpcare, should strip a requirement that forced insurers to cover essential benefits — including coverage for pregnancy, maternity, and newborn care.
Ironically, there were no women in sight.
Washington Sen. Patty Murray (D) was one of the first people to notice and respond to the alarming photo.
A rare look inside the GOP’s women’s health caucus. https://t.co/SgLmvSpeSM— Senator Patty Murray (@PattyMurray) March 23, 2017
This is emblematic of how the Trump administration works. The AHCA is not meant to benefit elderly, poor and women, it is only meant to enrich the rich.
The Twitterati had a lot to say about Pence’s photo.
One of the biggest problems the GOP had with Obamacare was that men were required to pay for things like maternity care. Before ACA became the law, a ridiculously small percentage of health care plans covered maternity care and it was legal for insurance providers to dub pregnancy as a “pre-existing condition” and refuse coverage.
Obamacare required providers to include both prenatal and postpartum health care in their plans.
“[Eliminating] essential health benefits means Republicans are making being a woman a preexisting condition,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi told reporters. “Again, stripping guaranteed maternity care is a pregnancy tax, pure and simple.”
Here is the list of ACA’s 10 “essential health benefits” that the Republicans want to repeal:
- Outpatient care without a hospital admission, known as ambulatory patient services
- Emergency services
- Pregnancy, maternity and newborn care
- Mental health and substance use disorder services, including counseling and psychotherapy
- Prescription drugs
- Rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices, which help people with injuries and disabilities to recover
- Laboratory services
- Preventive care, wellness services, and chronic disease management
- Pediatric services, including oral and vision care for children