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What last night’s Senate vote could mean for women’s health care

by Lauren Mandel

In a matter of days, President-elect Donald Trump will take office as the next President of the United States. But he’s not waiting until he takes office to influence certain change. Just last night, the Senate voted to begin breaking apart the Affordable Care Act, and although we’ve mentioned in the past that the health law’s future is still somewhat unknown, it’s becoming more and more likely that it will not remain in tact.

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So what does this vote mean, particularly for women’s health care? In response to the vote, Democratic senators put forth a series of amendments in an attempt to protect certain provisions of Obamacare, but all were rejected. One amendment would have required insurers to continue to cover the cost of contraceptives, and without it, 55 million women could be left to pay for their birth control completely out of pocket.

A second amendment attempted to maintain the pre-existing conditions provision of the current health law, which protects those with conditions like cancer or diabetes from being denied or charged more for coverage. This amendment was also denied, which means getting pregnant (which is considered a pre-existing condition under Obamacare) could mean increased premiums for millions of women.

While this is only the beginning of the process to dissolve the Affordable Care Act, it’s a sign that Trump and the Republican party will waste little time doing what they’ve been promising for months.

Stayed tuned for continued updates on the Affordable Care Act and other health care news. 

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