Health

Those in favor of keeping the Affordable Care Act (otherwise known as Obamacare) will rally together in Louisville on Saturday.

The event is part of “Save My Care,” a two-month bus tour through states to highlight the stories of people affected by the law. The bus tour is funded through the Alliance for Healthcare Security, a coalition that includes Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc., Physicians for a National Health Program, and Service Employees International Union.

The tour comes as Congress is moving forward to repeal the ACA. A plan is due out next week.

One proposed plan would let states keep the ACA and keep taxes in place. On Wednesday, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul released a plan that would do away with almost all major reforms of the ACA, putting in place instead individual health pools where people could come together to buy insurance from an insurer.

Paul said in a conference call that he’s expecting congressional Republicans to go against keeping ACA taxes.

“We’re going to hear from people who have gained coverage, folks who in one way or another have benefited and want to make sure we have a replacement that is as good or better,” said Emily Beauregard, executive director of advocacy group Kentucky Voices for Health.

Some of those benefits include a rule that insurers can no longer charge women more than men for insurance, mandating employers provide coverage, coverage for people with pre-existing conditions, reforms to push doctors to provide more quality care and including mental health services.

Kentucky also received over $76 million in 2014 alone for grants toward expanding school-based health care, paying for substance abuse treatment, programs for preventing strokes and heart attacks and opening more spots for new nurses and physicians in rural areas.

Before the ACA, only people with employer coverage generally got tax benefits to help pay for health insurance. In 2016, 56,488 moderate- and middle-income Kentuckians received tax credits averaging $258 per month to help them get covered through exchanges.

Attendees at the event on Saturday will be able to speak about their own experiences, and record stories on camera. The Louisville rally will take place at the Family Health Center in Portland at 11 a.m.

More information about the tour can be found here.

 

Lisa Gillespie is WFPL's Health and Innovation Reporter.