Healthcare leaders respond to ACA ruling

Many lauded the High Court’s decision to uphold the law.

Much of the healthcare industry breathed a sigh of relief last week as the U.S. Supreme Court declined to strike down the law for a third time.

In a 7 to 2 ruling, the High Court ruled that Texas lacked standing in its challenge to the individual mandate. In the technical ruling the court failed to address the underlying issues of the suit.

The opinion brings the latest high-profile challenge to the law to an end.

Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, the recently confirmed administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), issued a statement celebrating the court victory.

“From my early career on the House Ways and Means Committee, I worked on this life-saving law,” she says in the statement. “And later in a leadership post at CMS, I worked to implement the ACA – and the results are clear. Tens of millions of Americans can no longer be discriminated against due to pre-existing conditions like cancer, asthma, or diabetes. Thanks to the ACA, millions of people have access to preventative health care at no cost and Medicare prescription drug coverage was made more affordable by closing the gaps in coverage.”

Gerald E. Harmon, MD, president of the American Medical Association (AMA), voiced his organization’s commitment to supporting the law.

“With yet another court decision upholding the ACA now behind us, we remain committed to strengthening the current law and look forward to policymakers advancing solutions to improve the ACA,” he says in a statement. “The AMA will continue working to expand access to health care and ensure that all Americans have meaningful, comprehensive, and affordable health coverage to improve the health of the nation. We have a plan—2021 and Beyond: AMA’s Plan for the Uninsured—to do just that.”

George M. Abraham, MD, MPH, president of the American College of Physicians (ACP) also reacted to the ruling in his own statement.

“Eliminating the coverage, benefits and protections provided by this law would have thrown our health care system into chaos, and placed health care for millions of Americans in jeopardy,” he says. “We are glad that the justices saw the need for the law to remain in place.”