July 27, 2017

Hirono Fights to Protect Hawaii Residents Living with Pre-Existing Conditions

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Mazie K. Hirono introduced a measure to protect Americans living with pre-existing conditions from the devastating effects of Senate Republicans’ health care bill. More than 590,000 adults in Hawaii live with pre-existing conditions that could keep them from accessing affordable health care under the Republican bill.

“I was fortunate that after my cancer diagnosis, I was able to focus on my course of treatment instead of how I would pay for it. Under Trumpcare, Hawaii residents living with pre-existing conditions won’t be able to afford the health care that could one day save their life,” said Senator Hirono. “This measure would ensure that millions of people across the country can afford the care that might one day save their life.”

Following Tuesday’s vote to begin debate, the Senate is currently considering amendments on the health care repeal legislation. Senators Hirono and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) will push for a vote this week.

If successful, their effort would require the bill to be revised in order to “eliminate provisions that threaten to make health care unaffordable for those with pre-existing conditions” before the Senate could pass it. Republican proposals threaten coverage for millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions, ranging from serious diseases like cancer and diabetes, to pregnancy, acne, or asthma.

The various versions of Republican health care repeal legislation that Senator Hirono has fought to stop over the past several weeks would weaken guaranteed protections, rollback coverage of essential services, and could throw people with pre-existing conditions, struggling with a sickness, into a high-cost pool that could price them out of the health insurance they have today.