Nicholas Bagley, JD, professor at Michigan Law at the University of Michigan, speaks about the benefits of ongoing communication about the effects of the Braidwood ruling and what will be done to keep preventive care accessible.
Nicholas Bagley, JD, professor at Michigan Law at the University of Michigan, discusses what will be done to protect preventive care after the ruling in the Braidwood v Becerra case and what can be gained from ongoing discussions with policymakers and legislators.
What can be gained from speaking with legislators, policymakers, and the general public on these issues in terms of future policies?
If you're speaking to Congress, I think you say, "Look, the preventive services mandate is an extremely popular part of the Affordable Care Act [ACA]; it's part of the Affordable Care Act that has reached more than 150 million Americans. It is not a controversial provision, it's not caught up in hot-button battles over whether or not the ACA should have existed. It's just about providing high-quality preventive care." It shouldn't be a partisan issue, it should be an easy fix, and it should be something that that we can get agreement on across the aisle to be pushing for a legislative fix, to take this case and knock it out before it gets going.
In terms of the message to the public, it's that there could be some changes potentially coming down the pike. It won't happen right away, but it is a concern and we should be demanding, from our elected representatives, that they make good common sense decisions about coverage of preventive services. Nothing stops Congress from fixing this in my view. So fix it.
What are some things you expect to happen to keep preventive care accessible?
Apart from a push from the legislature, the government's going to take this appeal, it will take it up to the US Court of Appeals circuit, and depending on what happens there, the federal government may [bring it to the] Supreme Court for a final call. That's going to take a lot of time. I don't expect a final ruling in this case from the US Supreme Court for at least a couple of years.
In the meantime that gives a lot of room to Congress to fix this before it spirals out of control. And hopefully, too, the federal government will prevail and the preventive services mandate will be restored in the way that it was originally intended. But I think we should be open-eyed about the possibility the case could go south, and we should be doing everything we can to keep up the pressure on Congress to come up with a fix.