If the global pandemic that began in 2020 has made one issue abundantly clear, it is the need for all Americans to have access to affordable, quality, reliable healthcare. Congressman Connolly encourages everyone to get a Covid-19 vaccine as soon as possible – it is the best thing you can do to protect yourselves and your loved ones from the pandemic that has cost more than 700,000 American lives (find a vaccine here). He is proud to have been an original supporter and consistent defender of the Affordable Care Act, which has lowered costs and expanded health care access to millions of Americans, many of whom would not have insurance otherwise. The ACA also ensured those diagnosed with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied coverage, helped to stabilize premiums, and guaranteed children could stay on their parents insurance plan until the age of twenty-six. Despite the former Trump administration’s attempts and Republicans continued attacks on the ACA from the national to local levels, it remains overwhelmingly popular with the public and improves the lives of more than 3 million people across Virginia, where the uninsured rate has continued to shrink by more than 30%.
Congressman Connolly also helped champion Medicaid expansion, a six year fight that has seen more than 400,000 newly eligible Virginians receive healthcare coverage, and believes we should go further by lowering the enrollment age and expanding coverage to include dental, vision and hearing care. He has fought for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which gives healthcare coverage to more than 200,000 children in the Commonwealth, as well as the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program which provides high-quality healthcare coverage to so many civil servants and their families in the 11th Congressional District. Additionally, Gerry has consistently advocated for full funding for the National Institute of Health, Planned Parenthood and maternal health, and research and development to solve the medical issues of the 21st century. And with the ongoing attacks on reproductive freedoms, he believes it is beyond time to enshrine the protections of Roe v. Wade law.
In the 117th Congress, Congressman Connolly became a co-sponsor of the Mental Health Justice Act of 2021, which supports state and local governments with the training and dispatching of mental health experts to aid citizens facing behavioral health issues or crises, instead of police. He is also a co-sponsor of The Protecting Consumer Access to Generic Drugs Act of 2021, ensuring pharmaceutical companies don’t artificially inflate the price of drugs that should be available as generics. As the Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated, public health depends on world-wide cooperation, and that is why Congressman Connolly has been fighting to codify the The Global Health and Security Act and ensure US investments in global efforts to prevent, prepare, and respond to worldwide public health threats since before 2020.
Just as he has always done, Congressman Connolly will always stand to protect health care for all Americans and continue to fight to protect, improve, and expand our health care services.