The House of Representatives today voted 217-213 to pass the American Health Care Act, legislation to repeal and replace parts of the Affordable Care Act. The bill, which now goes to the Senate for consideration, would make significant changes to the Medicaid program, including repealing the ACA’s Medicaid expansion and cutting nearly $840 billion from the program. An amendment by Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-NJ) also would allow states to waive certain insurance rules and consumer protections required under the ACA, specifically those related to essential health benefits and community rating, thereby impacting pre-existing conditions. An additional amendment by Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) would establish an $8 billion fund for states that receive waivers for community rating to help individuals with pre-existing conditions. In a statement today, AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack said, “America’s hospitals and health systems are deeply disappointed in the House passage of the AHCA because it will jeopardize health coverage for millions of Americans. Despite last-minute changes, the proposal eliminates essential protections for older and sicker patients, including those with pre-existing conditions, such as cancer patients and the chronically ill. It does little to help the 24 million Americans who would be left without coverage following repeal and makes deep cuts to Medicaid, which provides essential services for the disabled, poor and elderly people in this country. As the backbone of our nation’s health safety net, America’s hospitals and health systems — which include more than 270,000 affiliated physicians and 2 million nurses and other caregivers — believe it’s vital that Medicaid be protected. We urge the Senate to restart and reset the discussion in a manner that provides coverage to those who need it and ensures that the most vulnerable are not left behind.”