If the Affordable Care Act is Repealed, What Would Be the Impact on Community Health Centers and the Communities They Serve?

This fall, the United States Supreme Court will hear arguments in California et al. v Texas et al. The Court will decide whether the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) “individual mandate” remains constitutional even though Congress has zeroed out the tax penalty for not maintaining health insurance. The Court also will decide whether, should the individual mandate be deemed unconstitutional, Congress, in setting the penalty at zero, actually intended to repeal the entire law.

How Do The Coronavirus Laws Enacted By Congress to Date Address Access to Care for Medically Underserved Communities and Populations?

In recent days, multiple stories about COVID-19’s disproportionate impact on African Americans have emerged, and from these stories, it is becoming increasingly clear that the nation’s medically underserved communities and populations are at the highest risk for coronavirus and its worst effects. 

Keeping Community Health Centers Strong During the Coronavirus Pandemic is Essential to Public Health

The COVID-19 stimulus legislation includes some financial relief for community health centers, including small business protections in which most health centers with less than 500 workers will be eligible to borrow up to $10 million to cover payroll expenses, rent, and overhead costs. However, our analysis shows 93 health centers which serve 8 million of 29 million health center patients (28%) nationwide are likely ineligible for this benefit.  The analysis can be accessed here.

Table 1. Large Community Health Centers with More than 500 Employees, 2018

In the COVID-19 Pandemic, Community Health Centers Are the Front Line for High-Risk, Medically Underserved Communities

By Jessica Sharac, Peter Shin, Maria Velasquez, and Sara Rosenbaum

Geiger Gibson/RCHN Community Health Foundation Research Collaborative Update

March 24, 2020

Medicaid As A Public Health Responder: Washington State’s 1135 Waiver

By Sara Rosenbaum, Maria Velasquez, Morgan Handley, Rebecca Morris, and Alexander Somodevilla