They Want to Address Mental Health? Reduce the Uninsured Rate!
People with mental health challenges are more likely to be the victims of violence than to engage in violence. And there is no indication that mental illness led to the horrific El Paso shooting.
Nonetheless, in the aftermath of the tragedy, many state and national leaders have talked about the importance of addressing mental health.
Well, if these elected officials want to really support mental health, we have a few suggestions for them.
First of all, stop attacking the Affordable Care Act and the mental health benefits that many Americans receive thanks to the health care law.
Our state leaders are in court trying to eliminate the ACA — including protections for pre-existing conditions, Essential Health Benefits like mental health coverage, and nearly $5 billion that Texans currently receive each year to sign up for reduced-price insurance on healthcare.gov.
Do state leaders have a plan to replace these health benefits? They do not.
And remember, the lawsuit isn't the only threat. Leading Republicans have renewed their promise to repeal the ACA if they control Congress and the White House after the next election.
Second, reduce the uninsured rate in Texas — the worst uninsured rate in the nation.
As mental health experts in our coalition have explained, this is a critical step if Texans are going to have the support they need to address mental health challenges and substance use disorders.
Texas leaders need to understand: it's time to reduce the uninsured rate and pledge to make the 2021 Texas legislative session a health care session!
Thank you for fighting to protect and expand health coverage for all Texans!