Durbin Joins Illinoisans With Pre-Existing Conditions To Speak Out Against Republican Threat To Overturn Affordable Care Act With SCOTUS Nomination

CHICAGO – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today visited Mount Sinai Hospital in Chicago, Illinois, to discuss the Supreme Court nomination and the importance of coverage for those with pre-existing conditions provided under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Durbin was joined by several Illinoisans with pre-existing conditions who shared their stories highlighting the importance of the protections provided by the ACA. One week after Election Day, the Supreme Court will take up a case that will determine the fate of the ACA; in this case, the Trump Administration and Republican attorneys general are urging the Court to strike down the ACA in its entirety.

“We know that access to health care and protections for pre-existing conditions are in jeopardy as Senate Republicans rush to confirm a new Trump Supreme Court nominee who has a record of criticizing cases that upheld the Affordable Care Act’s constitutionality,” Durbin said. “An estimated five million Illinoisans with pre-existing conditions stand to lose important protections if the law is eliminated by the Supreme Court.  Today I was honored to be joined by a few of these Illinoisans.  Their stories reflect how critical it is for the ACA to remain the law of the land.  It’s time to end this battle to eliminate the Affordable Care Act.”

Durbin was joined by Danielle Veira, Jeremy Wechsler, Karen Hall, and Bridget Hayman, who are Illinoisans with pre-existing conditions who depend on the protections in the Affordable Care Act for access to quality and affordable health insurance. Veira has been living with type 1 diabetes for nearly 25 years and depends on the ACA for affordable coverage for doctor’s appointments, testing supplies, and preventive care. Wechsler was able to get tested for a dangerous heart problem called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy once the ACA became law, and he has been able to manage his condition since. Hall is a two-time cancer survivor who uses the ACA to afford her medicine.  And Hayman has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair and was able to purchase an individual insurance coverage plan on the exchange for the first time.

Tens of millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions—including an estimated five million in Illinois—would lose protections if the ACA is eliminated. This includes the seven million Americans—and nearly 300,000 Illinoisans—who have been diagnosed with COVID-19.