SALEM, OR -- Governor Kate Brown says if the Affordable Care Act is repealed and the current Republican plan is put in place, Oregon's economy would be hit hard. "The 23,000 jobs the ACA created would be lost, along with an additional 19,000 jobs that support the healthcare industry," Brown said at a Thursday press conference.
The Governor asked the Oregon Health Authority and the Department of Consumer and Business Services to analyze the difference between the ACA, also known as "Obamacare," and the GOP's American Health Care Act (AHCA). Their report finds that 80,000 Oregonians won't be able to afford coverage next year; and that number could climb to as high as 465,000. Governor Brown adds, "The proposal to replace the ACA will punish Oregon for our success." Click HERE to read the full report from the OHA and DCBS.
Rural hospitals are bracing for the loss of the ACA. One in three rural Oregonians get insurance under the Affordable Care Act. Brown says, "This bill will pull the rug out from under Oregonians; from families, to doctors, to hospitals." In Harney County, 800 additional county residents got coverage from the ACA, and Dan Grigg, CEO of the Harney District Hospital in Burns, says they were able to add two doctors. "Well, not everything in the AHCA is bad. I hope that they can retain at least the coverage for members of our communities and our state, as well as the federal funding to help us keep the CCOs and the primary care focus that we have now."
Republican State Representative Knute Buehler (R-Bend) calls the AHCA "a bad plan for Oregon." He's urging Congress and the President to develop patient-centered, bipartisan reforms. Read his full statement, isssued Thursday:
“Oregon's experience with the ACA is mixed. Cover Oregon was an undisputed fiasco and insurance premiums are rising for too many Oregonians. At the same time, Medicaid expansion is now is providing roughly 400,000 Oregonians with health security for the first time. The American Health Care Act is a bad plan for Oregon because it would eliminate the Medicaid safety net for tens of thousands, blow a bigger hole in our state budget and strip away coverage for essential opioid addiction treatment. I urge Congress and the President to step back from the partisan politics and develop patient-centered, bipartisan health care reforms that can stand the test time.”