A bill to fundamentally change the way Americans purchase and receive health care passed the House of Representatives and is now waiting consideration in the Senate. The bill, which was opposed by nearly every major medical organization, threatens the health and well-being of millions of Americans with public and private insurance.

The bill would effectively gut Medicaid, the program that today, thanks to expansion under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), ensures health services for 74 million Americans, including nearly 1.3 million Marylanders. As leaders and frontline health professionals, we see daily how Medicaid saves lives and provides hope and stability, and our state must join a growing national effort to preserve it.

On Monday, we will join with leaders from the NAACP, Health Care Access Maryland, Health Care for All! and advocates around the state at a public forum to advance our work here in Maryland to save Medicaid. We start that work by making sure elected officials and fellow citizens alike know and understand the role of Medicaid in safeguarding health and life in Baltimore, Maryland and nationally.

Consider that 23 percent of Maryland’s 5.9 million residents are low-income and 65 percent of the state’s adults suffer from poor physical and behavioral health. Here are just a few examples of how loss of Medicaid coverage would hurt our very own neighbors, family members and friends:

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Gutting Medicaid will harm generations to come – Baltimore Sun