Top Delaware officials worry Republicans' plans to overturn the Affordable Care Act could impair their efforts to battle drug abuse and mental illness.
"One of the reasons Medicaid is so important is that Medicaid provides behavioral health care and drug treatment," Sen. Tom Carper told an audience at the Dover office of Connections, the state's largest nonprofit provider of drug treatment care. "It's the single largest provider of this kind of coverage. Unfortunately, the bill that's in the would substantially erode that kind of coverage."
Earlier this month, House Republicans unveiled their proposal to replace the ACA, also known as Obamacare. They have been clamoring to repeal the law for years but now have the power to do so, given their wins in November gave them control of both houses of Congress and the White House.
Among the many changes to the law, the House bill scales back the ACA's expansion of the federal Medicaid program, which helps pay for health care for low-income Americans. An analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that 14 million people would lose insurance if the House plan were to take effect; by 2026, that number would grow to 26 million.