WASHINGTON, DC—Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4) today released the following statement on the fifth anniversary of the enactment of the Affordable Care Act:

“The Affordable Care Act has helped more than 16 million previously uninsured Americans gain health insurance coverage – some for the first time in their lives – while reducing Connecticut’s uninsured rate almost by half. In Connecticut, more than 550,000 have enrolled through Access Health CT. Because of the Affordable Care Act, people with diabetes, breast cancer or other pre-existing conditions can no longer be denied health coverage. Families in Connecticut and across our nation no longer face the threat of an annual or lifetime limit on their health care. And women can no longer be charged higher premiums than men for the same coverage. It has also provided millions of women with free preventive care, saved seniors thousands of dollars on their prescription drugs and helped slow the growth in health care costs.

“I was proud to to vote for the Affordable Care Act and to defend it from dozens of attempts by Republicans to repeal or undermine the law, which has been life-changing for millions of Americans. Instead of continuing their partisan attacks on health reform, Republicans should work with Democrats to make sure more middle-class and low-income Americans feel the benefits of our economic recovery.”

In Connecticut, 552,603 residents have obtained health coverage through Access Health CT since it was launched in October 2013, reducing the state's uninsured rate almost in half to 4 percent. During the most recent enrollment period, which ended Feb. 15, Access Health CT enrolled 204,358 new enrollees statewide. In addition, 110,095 Connecticut residents purchased health plans sold by insurance companies, and 442,508 enrolled in Medicaid.

The Affordable Care Act has extended Medicare’s solvency by more than a decade. It is also providing major savings in drug costs for seniors in the Medicare Part D ‘donut hole’ because the law closes the ‘donut hole’ over 10 years.  Since the Affordable Care Act’s enactment,  this provision has saved Connecticut seniors a total of $204.6 million on their prescription drugs.  Last year alone, 60,610 individuals in Connecticut saved $64.7 million, or an average of $1,067 per beneficiary.