American Health Care Act Could Change Healthcare for Many

FRESNO, Calif. - Healthcare could change for hundreds of thousands of Americans in the Central Valley if "Obamacare" is repealed. The U.S. House of Representatives passed a new health care act, leaving many upset, and others looking forward to the change.

Local Planned Parenthood supporters were going to hold a protest on Friday against the Republicans who voted for this American Health Care Act, but they decided to hold off until next week. Pedro Elias, with Planned Parenthood Mar Vista, said many of their patients could lose out on healthcare if Planned Parenthood is defunded.

Congressman Jim Costa was among the Democrats who voted no against AHCA.

"This act and the amendments that were added in the last six weeks before the last time they attempted to bring the measure into the House is more flawed than what it was before in my view," stated Costa.

The AHCA scraps the individual mandate, meaning you're no longer required to have health insurance. It also changes the way pre-existing conditions are covered. States can opt out of requiring insurers to cover those patients and it immediately freezes the medicaid expansion.

Costa said, "The implementation of this measure would, I think, have disastrous affects here in our Valley and throughout the country."

Congressman Devin Nunes said the new act would improve the lives of Americans. He said most of his constituents have been stuck on Medicaid, and most doctors don't see Medicaid patients.

Elias said many low-income families go to them for healthcare, and the new act could cut funding to many of their programs.

He stated, "We're here for many, we're the first source or primary care for many men and women, and more importantly, for women we want to, we're here to protect their health care."

But political analyst Don Larson said the battle over healthcare is not over. The U.S. Senate has to ratify the act, and he believes Republican Senators will be paying close attention.

Larson said, "If you're up for re-election in the next elections cycle, this is probably going to become a major issue in every state."

Costa said he hopes U.S. Senators will start over with the healthcare bill. He also said he hopes the partisan bickering comes to an end.

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