Costa Supports Enhancing the Affordable Care Act

Jun 29, 2020
Press Release


(WASHINGTON) Congressman Jim Costa (CA-16) released the following statement after House passage of H.R. 1425, the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Enhancement Act, which builds on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to lower health costs and prescription drug prices:

“With the COVID-19 pandemic threatening the lives of Americans across the country, we need to act to improve healthcare access and enhance coverage,” said Costa. “The ACA has benefited thousands of people in my district, reducing the number of uninsured from 25% down to 10%. This legislation makes key changes to build on these successes and undo the Administration’s repeated attacks on Americans' ability to receive quality healthcare.”

The bill makes key enhancements to the ACA to improve access to healthcare for all Americans, including:

  • Increases the ACA’s affordability subsidies to be more generous and cover more middle-class families: 
    • No person will have to pay more than 8.5 percent of their income for a benchmark silver plan in the ACA marketplaces.
    • Many Americans will see their premiums cut in half or more
    • A family of four earning $40,000 would save nearly $1,600 in premiums each year.
    • A 64-year-old earning $57,420 would save more than $8,700 in premiums each year.
    • A single adult with income of $31,900 would see premiums cut in half.
    • An adult earning $19,140 would see premiums cut to zero, saving $800 dollars a year.
  • Negotiates for lower prescription drug prices, so that Americans no longer have to pay more for our medicines than Big Pharma charges for the same drugs overseas.
  • Expands coverage, pressing Medicaid expansion hold-out states with new carrots and sticks to adopt coverage for the 4.8 million Americans cruelly excluded.
  • Restores outreach and advertising funding slashed under the Trump Administration, allowing Americans to learn about available coverage.
  • Combats inequity in health coverage faced by communities of color, expanding more affordable coverage to vulnerable populations
    • Fights the maternal mortality epidemic by requiring states to extend Medicaid or CHIP coverage to new mothers for a full year post-partum.
  • Cracks down on junk plans, reversing the Trump Administration’s expansion of junk health insurance plans that do not provide coverage for essential medical treatments and drugs
  • Strengthens protections for people with pre-existing conditions, prohibiting junk plans from  discriminating against people with pre-existing medical conditions.

A fact sheet on the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Enhancement Act is available here.