WASHINGTON, DC—The Service Employees International Union today embraced a new report from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) showing that more than 5 million Americans with traditional Medicare took advantage of preventative benefits now available through the Affordable Care Act. The statement below can be attributed to Dr. L. Toni Lewis, Chair, SEIU Healthcare.
“At a time when the unemployment rate for Africans Americans is more than double the national average, many African Americans’ risk falling behind. Job loss can take a heavy toll on an individual’s wallet or pocketbook, but also on one’s psyche.
“News that more and more Americans are receiving preventative health care thanks to the Affordable Care Act holds special significance, especially for people of color. And, prior to the Affordable Care Act, more than 19 million African Americans were uninsured.
“The CMS announcement that the Affordable Care Act is increasing preventative care is also significant because racial and ethnic minorities are often less likely to receive preventative care than the rest of the population. In fact, African Americans seniors on Medicare are less likely to get vital preventative services, such as cancer screenings.