Advocates call on Gov. Rick Scott to implement Affordable Care Act

8:52 PM, Jun 29, 2012   |    comments
A demonstrator holds a sign at the state Capitol Friday in praise of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision on the health care law.
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Tallahassee, Florida - Supporters of the Affordable Care Act gathered at the state Capitol Friday to celebrate the U.S. Supreme Court's decision upholding the law.

The Florida Pediatric Society was joined by the League of Women Voters, the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans and other consumer advocates to praise the court's landmark decision.

They held up signs such as "Obamacares" and "Thank You."

Jessica Lowe-Minor of the League of Women Voters said the ruling brings the nation closer to the goal of providing universal health care for Americans.

"Now that the law has been upheld children will no longer be denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions. Young adults can stay on their parents' health plans as dependents until age 26, Medicare participants will have annual checkups and mammograms and many uninsured Americans will now have health coverage."

Over the past year-and-a-half, Gov. Rick Scott has turned away more than $100 million in federal cash intended to help Florida start implementing the health care law. He believes the law will raise costs for people and businesses in Florida and diminish the quality of medical care.

Barbara DeVane of the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans called on Scott and state lawmakers to get to work implementing the law.

"Yesterday we celebrated. Today it's time to say let's get to work to our legislators, our governor, this whole state. Let's pull together and let's get to work implementing this law, that it's the law of the land and if it's good enough for people in one state, it's good enough for all of us."

Dr. Louis St. Petery of the Florida Pediatric Society says now Florida must play catch-up to meet the requirements of the law.

He says more children on Medicaid stand to benefit from the Affordable Care Act because it mandates higher Medicaid reimbursements rates for doctors.

"Currently Florida Medicaid actually pays less than it costs a provider to see a child and as a result many providers are reluctant to take the fiscal risk and see Medicaid children. By increasing payments to primary and specialty care physicians for children, provider costs will be more adequately covered and more providers will be willing to see Medicaid children."

The advocates say the law will help 129 million Americans with pre-existing conditions get affordable health coverage and require insurers to spend more money on medical care and less on administration.

Dave Heller

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