Monday, July 02, 2012

Romney Surrogate Falsely Claims That Obamacare Would Harm Breast Cancer Patients

By Amanda Peterson Beadle/Think Progress
Following the Supreme Court’s ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act, Republicans are renewing their attacks against reform law by claiming that it will harm health care. On Sunday, Carly Fiorina — a Mitt Romney surrogate and a cancer surviver — fear mongered against the law, telling Candy Crowley on CNN’s State of the Union that Obamacare would have undermined her access to medical services:
FIORINA: As a cancer survivor, I will also say this. It terrifies me that the survival rates for breast cancer, which is what I had, are so much worse in the U.K. and Canada. Why? Because they don’t focus on prevention and aggressive detection in the same way we do.
CROWLEY: There’s prevention in the new bill, right?
FIORINA: The new protocols that have come down as a result of Obamacare would have been very deleterious to my personal health.
Watch the interview:
But Fiorina is wrong that the Affordable Care Act would have limited access to breast cancer screenings or hurt her cancer treatment. For one thing, Obamacare requires insurers to cover preventive services — like mammograms — at no additional cost and so far, more than 45 million women have taken advantage of the provision. Additionally, the health care reform law ensures that insurance companies cannot deny coverage because of pre-existing conditions, so cancer survivors — like Fiorina — cannot be denied coverage. The law also ensures that patients do not have to pay co-pays for cancer screenings.
Fiorina last used her own personal health status to misrepresent the measure in 2009, as a Senate candidate in California. She claimed that the U.S. Preventive Task Force’srecommendation would deny mammograms to women. “Do we really want government bureaucrats rather than doctors dictating how we treat things like breast cancer?” Fiorinaasked. But her claims were incorrect: the panel’s recommendations were only guidelines and had no authority to “decide what preventive measures are paid for or not.”
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