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Quigley Leads ACA Roundtable with Constituents, Health Care Professionals & Advocates

Aug 23, 2017
Press Release

CHICAGO – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) hosted a roundtable discussion at the Cook County Health and Hospitals System (CCHHS) to discuss the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the future of health care in Chicago. Rep. Quigley heard from constituents, doctors, medical researches, health care advocates, and public health representatives during the roundtable, where participants expressed their concerns regarding ACA repeal.

“Today’s conversation was informative, inspiring, and only underscored the vital role the Affordable Care Act plays in our communities, our connected health care systems, and our economy,” said Rep. Quigley. “Health care professionals and constituents alike made one thing very clear: the future of health care relies on productive, bipartisan improvements to the law, not a reckless gutting of patient protections that help Americans lead happy, healthy lives. From personal experiences to professional opinions, I thank everyone who shared their thoughts and concerns on this very important topic.”

“The Cook County Health & Hospitals System has seen a significant reduction in the number of uninsured patients we serve. Half of our patients used to be uninsured. Now, thanks largely to Medicaid expansion, one third of our patients remain uninsured. That change is related to a one-for-one transition from uninsured to Medicaid-insured,” said Dr. Jay Shannon, CEO, CCHHS.

"I’ve run marathons and completed dozens of triathlons, but as an individual with a physical disability, my healthy lifestyle will never be able to outrun my ‘pre-existing condition’ label,” said Diana Helt, an IL-05 constituent and triathlete living with cerebral palsy. “I don’t require complex and expensive care; but prior to the Affordable Care Act, I was unable to get health insurance because of my Cerebral Palsy diagnosis. The Affordable Care Act makes it possible for me to work in the nonprofit sector and do a job I love. It allows me to contribute to the economy, give back to my community and build a stable financial future.  The ACA levels the playing field and allows people with disabilities to thrive.”

“I am one among the millions of people who has served as a caregiver; my experience being to care for my mother during her last 5 years of decline and then death from Alzheimer's,” said Ann Kuta, an IL-05 constituent, caretaker, and Alzheimer’s Association ambassador. “She was one among 5 million people annually living with Alzheimer's or another form of dementia, an illness without a treatment, prevention, or a cure. I am grateful for Congressman Quigley's steadfast leadership in our shared work to increase funding for research, and I am glad to participate in the continued work to highlight the central role that access to quality affordable healthcare and services plays for all those continuing to live with Alzheimer's.”

“As President & CEO of Swedish Covenant Hospital I am excited and apprehensive about the future of health care,” said Anthony Guaccio, President and CEO, Swedish Covenant Hospital. “I’m excited because we are starting to make a real difference for many in regard to living a healthier life and creating healthier communities, due in large part to the  Affordable Care Act. Like many others, I’m also concerned that these significant gains in health, could be in jeopardy, due to the constant pressure to repeal the ACA.”

"Because of the ACA, children and families have benefited from important protections such as guaranteeing affordable and comprehensive coverage for children with pre-existing conditions and banning caps on lifetime coverage,” said Dr. Edward Pont, MD, Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Chair of Government Affairs Committee for Illinois Chapter of American Pediatrics. “Thanks the ACA, Medicaid and CHIP, 97% of children in Illinois now have access to comprehensive health care.“

Rep. Quigley has been a strong supporter of the ACA since it was signed into law 2010 and has adamantly opposed partisan attempts to repeal and/or replace the life-saving legislation. Over the past month, Rep. Quigley has met one-on-one with his constituents to hear how the ACA has changed their lives and shared their experiences through a series of #TrumpCareStories videos. Earlier this year, Rep. Quigley spoke on the House Floor to voice his long-standing and continued support of the ACA amid the health care law’s seventh anniversary and Republicans’ repeal efforts.