Sen. Lamar Alexander took another opportunity to slam the Affordable Care Act Monday after it was announced that a TennCare-sponsored program used by 16,000 Tennesseans would be discontinued under the new law.
Alexander, who is the ranking Republican on the Senate committee that oversees health policy, issued a news release saying President Barack Obama's signature policy had "destroyed an innovative state health insurance plan" and called once more for the law to be "repealed and replaced."
"Like all Americans, these Tennesseans were promised by President Obama that under his health law they'd keep their coverage, but will likely be forced by the law into the Obamacare exchange, where the affordability of health insurance, security of their personal information and ability of doctors to take new patients are all in question," Alexander said. "This is why the law should be repealed and replaced with step-by-step reforms that transform the health care delivery system by putting patients in charge, giving them more choices and reducing the cost of health care so that more people can afford it."
According to a Tennessean report, the CoverTN program does not cover all of the services required by the new law. The limited-benefit plan, which was created by Gov. Phil Bredesen in 2006, had an annual benefit limit of $25,000.
The report also says that Families USA, an advocacy organization for health care consumers, described the program as a "bare-bones health plan."
Still, Alexander's criticism is in line with recent jabs he's taken at the new health law. The senator, who is up for re-election in 2014, has taken heat from conservative groups on both state and national levels for his support of funding bills that included dollars marked for the implementation of the law.
The CoverTN program will expire Jan. 1.
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