Lawsuit Challenges Preventive Care Under Affordable Care Act

A challenge to the Affordable Care Act is still pending at the United Supreme Court, but other challenges against the law have also been introduced including one case in which a Texas federal judge suggested that most Americans receive preventive services like mammograms without charge. In this ruling, the judge also noted that businesses, as well as individuals who challenge the Affordable Care Act’s “first-dollar” coverage requirement for preventive services, have legal standing to do so. 


This judge has also previously found the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. The plaintiffs who initiated the case argue that religious and free-market objections exist regarding the Affordable Care Act’s requirement and seek to halt enforcement of the law. 


Based on a recent order, it appears likely that the judge will rule in favor of the plaintiffs and end up interfering with the Affordable Care Act’s application. 


The Role of the Affordable Care Act in Elder Care


The Affordable Care Act requires most private individuals and group health plans and some Medicaid programs to cover “recommended preventive services” for both adults and children without charging copayments or deductibles. Medicare’s preventive care benefits were also enhanced. These changes have resulted in it becoming more affordable for countless Americans including the elderly to receive various medical services including cancer screenings, alcohol abuse counseling, domestic violence counseling, and vaccines. 


The Affordable Care Act’s potential elimination of cost-sharing for cancer screening resulted in a substantial increase in the number of cancer cases that were diagnosed. It remains unclear how employers and insurers view both the value of the benefits provided by the Affordable Care Act.  


The Argument Presented in the Case


The most effective argument raised by the plaintiffs is that members of the three agencies that determine what services must be provided without charge to individuals are not appointed by the president and not confirmed by the Senate. This means that these measures, the plaintiffs argue, are not constitutionally authorized to make binding decisions. 


Response to the Texas Lawsuit


An attorney at Washington & Lee University who specializes in Affordable Care Act litigation has commented that this case is a substantial one. This attorney has commented that if the Affordable Care Act benefit is terminated, it would leave countless people to lose preventive services and other critical medical care that could help to address life-threatening issues. 


The Pending Case of California v. Texas 


Besides the Texas Case, the United States Supreme Court is also expected to soon issue a ruling in the case, California v. Texas, in which 21 Republican lawyers initiated a claim that the Congressional decision in 2017 as part of its tax cut bill to zero out the Affordable Care Act’s monetary penalty on individuals who did not obtain health insurance made the entire law unconstitutional. 


Contact an Experienced Elder Law Attorney Today


If you or your loved one has been denied your rights under the Affordable Care Act, you should not hesitate to speak with a compassionate lawyer. Contact Ettinger Law Firm today to schedule a free case evaluation.

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