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Arizonans Head to Nation’s Capital to Fight for Affordable, Accessible Health Coverage

Consumers Union hosts Advocates for Meetings with Lawmakers

Thursday, February 2, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Two Arizonans are joining Consumers Union, the policy and mobilization arm of Consumer Reports,  to urge Arizona’s lawmakers not to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a comprehensive plan that would guarantee affordable, accessible care for all consumers.

Rosemary Dixon of Prescott, and Phoenix local William “Keith” Rogers are traveling to Washington, D.C. to share how the Affordable Care Act has helped them. They will meet with members of Arizona’s Congressional delegation and their staff as Congress moves forward on repealing the ACA.

While searching for affordable health care after a 2011 move to Arizona to support her husband’s small business, Rosemary Dixon was diagnosed with Wegener’s Disease, an uncommon auto-immune disorder. She quickly found herself in the hospital with kidney and heart failure — and was continually denied insurance coverage due to her condition. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, Rosemary was able to get insured and has since received a critical kidney transplant, prescription drug coverage and is stable.

Keith Rogers was purchasing insurance on his own when he was diagnosed with an aggressive form of prostate cancer. His premiums skyrocketed and he was forced to tap into his savings to continue to buy coverage. Williams, a music teacher, was able to participate in the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion, allowing him to stay insured with his income level. He was recently diagnosed with neuropathy in both feet, a precursor to diabetes. While the Affordable Care Act protects those with preexisting conditions from being denied coverage, Keith admits he doesn’t know how he would survive without insurance.

Laura MacCleery, Vice President of Policy and Mobilization for Consumer Reports, said, “Repealing the Affordable Care Act without a comprehensive replacement plan could mean very real, serious consequences for American families. It’s critical that members of Congress hear directly from constituents who depend on the ACA and its protections. Any effort to repeal the law without a simultaneous replacement that, at a minimum, maintains coverage and provides comparable consumer protections for those who are currently covered puts the entire market – and consumers – at risk.”

Consumers Union has been a strong supporter of the Affordable Care Act. The group recently sent a letter to Congress, saying any move to repeal the law without a simultaneous replacement would be irresponsible. The consumer group has outlined principles that any potential replacement should meet and is sharing them with lawmakers during their meetings.

PLEASE NOTE: Consumers Union can connect reporters with consumers, including Rosemary Dixon and Keith Rogers, who have benefitted from the Affordable Care Act. For more information, contact Kara Kelber at kara.kelber@consumer.org.