ACP supports legislation increasing healthcare access, combatting COVID-19 pandemic

February 12, 2021
Keith A. Reynolds

In a pair of letters to congressional committees, the organization extolls the benefits of provisions in upcoming COVID relief legislation.

The American College of Physicians (ACP) has written to the House Ways and Means Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee to show their support for COVID-19 relief legislation expected to be voted on in both committees this week.

According to a news release, the letters detail the benefits patients and physicians would see from provisions contained in the legislation.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown our health care system into crisis,” Jacqueline W. Fincher, MD, MACP, president of ACP, says in the release. “We believe that many of the actions outlined in these proposals will help physicians and our patients. We need to ensure that we bring the pandemic under better control as quickly as possible, and we need to ensure that no one is forced to go without health care during this time while everyone’s health is under threat.”

The Ways and Means Committee letter expressed the ACP’s support for recommendations to reduce health care premiums for little- to middle-income Americans through tax credit subsidies, subsidizing COBRA coverage, and providing premium subsidies for unemployed workers who are ineligible for COBRA, the release says.

The Energy and Commerce Committee letter shares ACP’s support for accelerating efforts to distribute vaccines and COVID-19 testing through higher levels of funding. It also shows the ACP’s support for provisions related to Medicaid requiring it to cover COVID-19 vaccines and treatments, according to the release.

“As we face the threat of new, more infectious variants, while at the same time we are grappling with the logistics issues of vaccine distribution, we need to ensure that our patients, our physicians, and our health care system have the resources they need to respond to these challenges,” Fincher says. “We urge both chambers to work in a bipartisan manner to ensure that these policies are enacted without further delay to meet the health care and economic challenges that we face.”