AHCA causing concern for those with mental health issues in Tucs - Tucson News Now

AHCA causing concern for those with mental health issues in Tucson

(Source: Tucson News Now) (Source: Tucson News Now)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Members of the National Alliance on Mental Illness Southern Arizona (NAMI) are concerned about the new bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

The House approved the American Health Care Act of 2017 last week. 

The next step is the Senate.

Executive Director Clarke Romans of NAMI said it will negatively affect people living in Tucson with mental health needs.

Hundreds of people reach out to NAMI seeking mental health services. 

But Romans fears these services could disappear if funding is cut under the current proposed health care bill. 

Right now, the bill says states can apply for waivers. 

The waiver allows states to drop certain services, including mental health. 

Romans worries if the bill is left in the hands of the state, there will be cuts.

He said back in 2008, Arizona cut funding for mental health services. 

He said in some of those cases, it prevented people from receiving medication, a case manager and treatment. 

Those with mental illness tell Romans this bill will do more harm than good.

“If these people would be invested in, they want to be contributing members of society,” he said. “In the long run it pays off, but no one is concerned about the long run. They want to save money now.”

Several senators have said they're throwing this version of the GOP plan out, and starting over.  

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