Federal Cuts To Medicaid Will Have A Devastating Impact For Western New Yorkers

March 17, 2017

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release: March 17, 2017

Contact: Bill Covington | 716.913.6487 | William.Covington@1199funds.org | http://newyorkersforhealthcare.org/

‘The latest health care legislation being considered by Congress will decimate Medicaid funding and result in millions of Americans losing their health insurance. It would slash healthcare dollars for seniors, low-income people, and others who depend on Medicaid for crucial life-saving services -- in order to give a massive tax break to the wealthy and corporations.’

Alarmed by the draconian cuts to the Medicaid program contained in the American Healthcare Act, a broad group of WNY organizations are coming together to highlight the importance of Medicaid funding to ordinary and extraordinary New Yorkers and urge Congressmembers to oppose the act.

When: Friday, March 17 at 11:30 a.m.

Where: Community Health Center of Buffalo
34 Benwood Avenue, Buffalo

Who: Speakers will include representatives from the Healthcare Education Project, Community Health Center of Buffalo, NAACP, Planned Parenthood, AARP and more.

Dr Raul Vazquez MD, CEO of the Greater Buffalo United Accountable Healthcare Network ( GBUAHN), a Medicaid funded Health Home:

"We serve 45,000 low income patients. They are able to get preventive health care from a personal GBUAHN physician because of the expansion of Medicaid under the ACA. Take that away, and thousands of the people we serve will no longer be getting this care. It means they will have to head back to the emergency room, and then only when they are sick. This is a huge - and expensive - backward step”.

Todd Vaarwerk, Director of Advocacy and Public Policy for Western NY Independent Living:

"For the Community of persons with disabilities, this is not just a political issue; this is a matter of life and death. Without considering how the cuts would affect those people whose use of health care is essential to their very freedom, we run the risk of "turning back the clock" on the independence and integration of our community. "

Dr. Lavonne Ansari, CEO, Community Health Center of Buffalo, Inc., a Federally Qualified Healthcare Center with 5 locations in the Buffalo area, serving more than 18,000 patients:

“We need to fight for those who can’t advocate for themselves. The proposed change in health care funding alone is an 800 billion dollar cut in Medicaid. These cuts also impact employment with the loss of thousands of jobs which will impact millions of families. From health care to education to housing and environmental justice, the quality of life in communities across the country is in jeopardy.”

In the days and weeks ahead, look for #BecauseOfMedicaid on social media platforms.

Impact of The latest health care legislation CD 27:

• 43,190 working adults who will lose their coverage entirely
• 140,569 low-income seniors, people with disabilities, children, and parents who will face unprecedented cuts in services
• Thousands suffering from mental health and substance use disorders who will no longer have access to treatment