Senator Stabenow Celebrates Impact of Affordable Care Act Ahead of 14-Year Anniversary

Senator Stabenow Authored Key Provisions in the Affordable Care Act to Protect Maternity Care, Expand Behavioral Health Care Services, and Lower Costs

Friday, March 22, 2024

WASHINGTON – Ahead of the 14-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, Senator Stabenow is celebrating the historic impact this law has had on people in Michigan and across the country. Senator Stabenow was a key member of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee during the passage of the Affordable Care Act and authored multiple provisions that improved the health care system across the country.

“While writing the Affordable Care Act, we were optimistic about the lives we could save if Americans had affordable health care. Fourteen years later, the impact is clear. Because of this law, pregnant moms can get the care they need, health insurance companies can’t discriminate against someone because they have a pre-existing condition, and it’s easier to get mental health and substance use disorder services. This law is still helping Michigan families go to the doctor, grow their families, and take care of their loved ones,” said Senator Stabenow.

“The ACA is a milestone in the commitment of the United States to the health and prosperity of American people. As a practicing pediatrician and public health expert, I see the benefits of the ACA every single day. Without Senator Debbie Stabenow the ACA would not be nearly as robust and progressive. The ACA is Obamacare. It is also Debbiecare,”said Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, Associate Dean for Public Health and C. S. Mott Endowed Professor of Public Health at Michigan State University College of Human Medicine.

“14 years ago, Senator Debbie Stabenow helped write the Affordable Care Act and transformed the health care system in Michigan and across the country. She was instrumental in making sure pregnant moms could get the care they need and that people could access services for mental health and substance use disorders. The Affordable Care Act has helped so many people in Michigan and Protect Our Care is so grateful to have her as a partner,” said Protect Our Care Michigan Director Dianne Byrum. 

The Affordable Care Act includes key initiatives led by Senator Stabenow:

  • Providing Behavioral Health Care Coverage:Health insurance plans are required to comply with federal law and provide mental health services that are equivalent in coverage to physical health services. Treatment for depression will receive the same coverage as treatment for high blood pressure.
  • Maternity Care as an Essential Health Benefit: Senator Stabenow fought to require health insurance plans to cover maternity care.
  • Investment in Nurse Training: The law included funding for training of nurses through a new, federally-funded partnership with hospitals and community-based centers. 
  • School-Based Health Centers: Key investments for school-based health centers now allow for children to receive health care services at school.
  • Lowering Health Care Costs: Senator Stabenow led the effort to make sure that no one in America will ever have to spend more than 10% of their income on health insurance premiums. She also fought to increase access to more affordable generic drugs for seniors, by allowing Medicare Prescription Drug plans to waive co-pays for generic drugs.

Since it was enacted on March 23, 2010, Senator Stabenow has defended the Affordable Care Act from numerous attacks by Republicans and has worked to strengthen the law, lower costs, and ensure that health care stays affordable. Senator Stabenow made it a priority to strengthen the Affordable Care Act when writing the Inflation Reduction Act. Thanks to her leadership on the Inflation Reduction Act, nearly 271,000 people in Michigan with an Affordable Care Act plan are saving an additional $414 on their monthly health insurance premiums on average.