Support Affordable Health Care : NMAPPP Act
As of today, nearly 15 million people across the country have had a confirmed case of COVID-19 and the number continues to climb daily. Many who have contracted the virus have needed medical care, with hundreds of thousands ending up in the hospital. Many COVID-19 patients are low-income, or immigrants. Many are our essential workers. Everyone can’t afford medical treatment – and many have received medical bills they can’t afford after leaving the hospital. We must ensure access to affordable medical treatments for all COVID-19 patients.
Equally important is the cost of the vaccine. We are all excited about the news of effective COVID-19 vaccines to protect us, but we can’t overlook the problem of letting Big Pharma control pricing.
There’s been a lot of coverage and praise of scientists and rightly so, but little coverage of another large contributor – US. American taxpayers have contributed nearly $12 billion to fund research, development, testing and the manufacture of doses. Additional taxpayer contributions will fund the mass distribution of the vaccine.
So now how much is the vaccine going to cost us?
Currently, there are no government regulations controlling the costs of the vaccine. We have contributed billions of dollars with no strings attached. Companies are promising they will keep the price low and that the vaccines will be covered by health insurance. But not everyone has health insurance.
Additionally, the vaccines are covered thanks to the no-cost preventative care protections in the ACA, meaning it’s covered by our health insurance, as well as covered by Medicare and Medicaid. If we lose the ACA, that provision ends and people could be forced to pay out of pocket costs. Right now the companies are promising a low out of pocket price, but low prices don’t guarantee affordability. If Big Pharma controls the prices then they can raise the price any time like they have done with many other medicines.
This is why we must continue to call for the passing of the Make Medications Affordable by Preventing Pandemic Price-gouging (MMAPPP) Act. We need you to help push our NJ Congressional delegation to co-sponsor and support this legislation!