health care

Since Republicans have been in charge in Raleigh, the cost of health insurance has skyrocketed for North Carolinians, causing a detrimental impact on mental health services

Click here for more background on how N.C. Republicans have failed to address the needs of North Carolinians who live with mental illness and addiction. Republicans in the North Carolina legislature have failed to understand the connection between faltering mental health services in the sta…

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Senate Republicans play politics with school safety, tried to use bill to dismantle health care coverage for preexisting conditions

In June 2018 Senate Republicans surprised the public with new portions of a school safety bill that would alter insurance laws. 

The changes would allow membership groups and nonprofits to offer health insurance plans that were exempt from state oversight and from ACA regulations

The changed law would have allowed these plans to exclude or charge higher premiums to people with preexisting conditions

According to NC Health News, the plans offered in NC would be similar to some offered in Tennessee where ACA premiums have “climbed precipitously” due to these unregulated plans. 

Senate Republicans voted in favor of allowing health insurance plans that cherry-pick healthy enrollees and leave sicker people in the market, causing everyone’s premiums to skyrocket. 

Though the House rejected this change, days later the House Republicans again blocked Medicaid expansion that would keep health care out of reach for hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians. 

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Republicans Play Politics, Keep Healthcare Out of Reach for North Carolinians

Republican lawmakers made politically-motivated decisions that put healthcare out of reach for hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians.

North Carolina is one of the most expensive states for healthcare; around half a million North Carolinians do not have access to health insurance because Republican lawmakers decided to play politics with people’s lives.  

Republicans refused to expand Medicaid coverage. This politically motivated decision priced out many people in North Carolina’s insurance market who could have been covered under Medicaid but now have to purchase insurance that many cannot afford.

Republican lawmakers voted against Medicaid expansion that would have covered over 500,000 low-income North Carolinians and would have been funded by federal money for three years.

Republicans’ refusal to expand Medicaid continues to hurt our rural communities and drive the wedge between urban areas and rural areas even deeper. Four rural hospitals have closed in North Carolina since Republicans took over the General Assembly in 2010. Republicans’ refusal to expand Medicaid hurts real people across rural North Carolina.

Republicans show over and over that the only thing they care about is facing voters in November. Instead of playing election year politics, we should take real steps to improve access and care for people across North Carolina by expanding Medicaid.

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North Carolina Legislator Profile: Nelson Dollar (R-Wake)

In this legislator profile, we focus on Rep. Nelson Dollar, the Republican representative from District 36, who has been in the General Assembly for over a decade. Since the Republicans took control of the House in 2011, Dollar has been senior Chairman of the Appropriations Committee working as House Republicans main budget writer. According to the News & Observer, “officially” Nelson Dollar “is senior chairman of the House Appropriations Committee.  Unofficially, he’s the House gatekeeper.” Read more here.

“Most of the people who would have been covered by Medicaid expansion are ‘relatively healthy’ and could always get care in emergency rooms.” –Nelson Dollar (News & Observer, 10/14/13)

Summary

  • Dollar has consistently written budgets and policies that shortchange education at every level. Instead, prioritizing tax cuts for big corporations.
  • During the more than 10 years that Rep. Dollar has served in the legislature, he has eliminated policies that would aid his constituents
    • He advocated for cutting child care subsidies
    • He voted against Medicaid expansion
    • He supported a budget that eliminates the ability to access health insurance after retirement, for state employees hired after 2021
  • Dollar has used his position of power to benefit himself with lucrative consulting contracts.

Read more on Dollar here.

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Robert Bryan, far from roughing it after losing House seat

Former Republican House member Robert Bryan III lost to Democrat Mary Belk in the November 2016 election, but his loss couldn’t have stung much. In April 2017 Bryan was appointed by the House to the UNC Board of Governors and was sworn in for his four-year term at the end of June. …

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