Urge Your Representative to Vote No

A Message from AAP President Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP


Dear Dr. Yogman:

We are at a critical moment when it comes to protecting children's health care coverage.

On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representatives will vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA). If it passes, the bill will advance to the Senate and is one step closer to becoming law.

This bill is detrimental for children and families across the country, and the Academy has been opposed to the bill since it was first introduced. Pediatricians have also been voicing their concerns in newspapers across the country, including theWashington Post and the New York Times, and calling their members of Congress to explain how the bill would impact children in their state.

Dr. Yogman: Please join us right now to keep the momentum going.  

We are at a historic high of 95% of children who have health care coverage. The AHCA would erase these gains and make coverage less comprehensive and less affordable for patients. Its drastic changes to Medicaid mean less coverage for those who need it most, including children with special health care needs and those from low-income families. Put simply: the bill moves us backward at a time when we have much to lose.

Specifically, the bill would:

  • Drastically alter Medicaid, jeopardizing children's health: The bill would transform Medicaid from an entitlement to a capped funding stream or block grant, shifting costs to states and likely leading to enrollment cuts.
    • It also jeopardizes Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) benefits, which cover a wide array of medically necessary services for children.
  • Make coverage less affordable. The bill reduces tax credits and eliminates cost-sharing subsidies to help families afford insurance that meets their needs.
  • Compromise care for low-income families: The bill would phase out the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) Medicaid expansion, which increased parental coverage and helped keep families healthier.

Dr. Yogman, please urge your representative to vote "no" on the American Health Care Act. We need every pediatrician voice coming together and emphasizing the importance of preserving gains in children's coverage.

There are many ways you can lend your voice to this effort:

  • To urge your representative to vote against the AHCA, visitfederaladvocacy.aap.org and click on "Vote No on the American Health Care Act" in the Advocacy Action Center. There, you will find a template email and talking points to guide your outreach. Click here for state fact sheets on children's coverage.
  • Check out the AAP's new Protecting Children's Coverage toolkit onfederaladvocacy.aap.org, which includes a variety of resources and information on how to advocate, including template letter text, social media messages and op-ed guidelines.
  • Share messages on social media using #Docs4Coverage and #KeepKidsCovered. Below are sample tweets and here is a list of U.S. Representatives on Twitter:
    • .{Add Elected Official Twitter handle} I'm a pediatrician & constituent with one message: #KeepKidsCovered. Vote no on the AHCA.
    • 95% of kids are covered by insurance. AHCA would erode that progress.{Add Elected Official Twitter Handle} vote no and #KeepKidsCovered!
  • Sign up to become an AAP Key Contact and receive timely advocacy action alerts and weekly federal legislative updates. Request to sign-up by emailingThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  with your AAP ID (if known) and your preferred email address to receive the communications.

Congress will adjourn for its spring recess April 10 - April 21, making your advocacy over the next several days and weeks all the more important. Every voice and every advocacy action, no matter how big or small, makes a difference. Please know that I will be with you at every step of the way, urging Congress and our federal leaders to put kids first - our children deserve no less.

Thank you for all that you do.

Sincerely,

Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP
President
American Academy of Pediatrics

@AAPPres

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