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Gov’t: Up to 129 Million Americans Have Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

US Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today released a new report showing that up to half of all non-elderly Americans have pre-existing health conditions that would place them at risk of being denied health insurance, being dropped by their insurers or paying higher premiums if last year’s Affordable Care Act had not been passed.

As many as 129 million Americans under the age of 65 have some type of pre-existing condition. Some of the more common ones are heart disease, cancer, asthma high blood pressure and arthritis, but even pregnancy and domestic violence can be considered pre-existing conditions.

“The Affordable Care Act is stopping insurance companies from discriminating against Americans with pre-existing conditions and is giving us all more freedom and control over our health care decisions,” Secretary Sebelius said.

“The new law is already helping to free Americans from the fear that an insurer will drop, limit or cap their coverage when they need it most.  And Americans living with pre-existing conditions are being freed from discrimination in order to get the health coverage they need.”

This report comes as the newly Republican-controlled House of Representatives is set to vote on a largely symbolic repeal of the Affordable Care Act tomorrow. With Democrats still controlling the Senate and President Obama wielding the veto pen, repeal is all but impossible at this time. Furthermore, an Associated Press poll has found dwindling support for repeal, with just 30% of Americans  now saying they are “strongly opposed” to “Obamacare.”

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