Yarmuth celebrates effect of health care reform law in Louisville


by Joe Arnold


Posted on September 24, 2012 at 12:03 AM

Updated Monday, Sep 24 at 7:41 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky (WHAS11) -- Despite a recent poll that found only 33 percent of Kentuckians support the new health care reform law, U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY) isn't shying away from his support of the controversial legislation.

Yarmuth, who is running against Republican Brooks Wicker for a fourth term, is not only standing by his affirmative vote, he is celebrating the two-year anniversary of several major consumer protections of the law in a series of appearances on Monday in Louisville.

Yarmuth will appear at University Hospital's emergency room, a Walgreens Pharmacy and speak to students at University of Louisville.

An advisory from Yarmuth's office says he will be joined by five Louisvillians "who have directly benefited from the consumer protections included in the Affordable Care Act," including two women who credit the law for their ability to get medical insurance despite pre-existing conditions.

A Bluegrass Poll released by the Courier-Journal on September 17 revealed that among the same pool of likely voters who overwhelmingly disapprove of the health care law, a majority approve of the provisions Yarmuth is highlighting on Monday.

• 82 percent support a requirement for insurance companies to pay for pre-existing conditions.

• 62 percent support a provision that allows adult children to remain on parents’ policies until age 26.

• 56 percent support the provision which requires businesses with more than 50 employees to either offer them health insurance or pay a fine.

A news release from Yarmuth's Congressional office provided statistics of the law's effect since provisions began to be   implemented on September 23, 2010:

Louisville children can no longer be denied coverage because of preexisting health conditions.
    5,800 young adults in Louisville now have health insurance through a parent’s plan.
    32,000 Louisville children now have free regular pediatrician visits and other preventive care though their health insurance.
    130,000 adults in Louisville now have free preventive care and health screenings though their health insurance.
    510,000 Louisvillians no longer face the threat of annual or lifetime limits on coverage, or of having their coverage rescinded if they get sick.
    270,000 Louisvillians are in health care plans that previously imposed lifetime limits but are now prohibited from doing so.

The Bluegrass Poll, however, showed that 70 percent of likely Kentucky voters polled oppose the "individual mandate," a provision which assesses a fine against anyone who fails to purchase health insurance.