The following is a statement from the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American College of Physicians, the American Osteopathic Association, and the American Psychiatric Association.
Washington, D.C. – Our organizations, representing nearly 600,000 physicians and medical students, are frustrated, alarmed and disappointed by the rulings of a federal court that struck down the Affordable Care Act’s requirement for insurers and health plans to cover, without cost-sharing, preventive services recommended by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF).
Our physicians are on the frontlines of care, and we fear this decision will strip millions of patients of their access to important screenings for cancer, heart disease, counseling services, and preventive medications, including pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) medications for the prevention of HIV. Invalidating these coverage requirements will make access to evidence-based preventive care financially unattainable for many patients.
All patients deserve equitable and reliable access to preventive services. Research demonstrates that health care systems prioritizing access to primary and preventive care have better patient outcomes and lower health care costs, including decreases in costly hospitalizations and emergency department visits.
This federal court decision was wrong-headed and should be appealed and overturned. The health and well-being of millions of Americans is at stake.