From the onset of this debate, America’s hospitals and health systems have been guided by a set of key principles that would protect coverage for Americans. Unfortunately, the draft bill under discussion in the Senate to repeal and replace parts of the Affordable Care Act moves in the opposite direction, particularly for our most vulnerable patients.

The Senate proposal would trigger deep cuts to the Medicaid program that covers millions of Americans with chronic conditions, such as cancer, along with the elderly and individuals with disabilities who need long-term services and support. Medicaid cuts of this magnitude are unsustainable and will increase costs to individuals with private insurance.

Now is the time for action. The Senate is likely to vote next week, with coverage for millions of Americans hanging in the balance. As hospital and health system leaders, our voices must be heard. Please urge your senators to oppose this bill, and reach out to motivate others in your community – especially employees and trustees – to take action as well. They can make a real difference for our patients.

Look for more information from us as we ramp up our various efforts to make our case to protect coverage.

The AHA urges that senators oppose this bill. The health of our nation depends on it. As a political analyst recently said: “We are living through history that will be studied and debated until the end of time.”