The Affordable Care Act helped more Americans secure health insurance than ever before and ended the immoral practice of denying health coverage on the basis of pre-existing conditions. Although the ACA and its implementation have been imperfect, Bryan believes strongly that we need to keep moving health care forward by fighting to make the ACA better, not repealing it and the landmark protections it provides to patients and consumers.
That means reducing plan costs for individuals and small businesses, and removing incentives for employers to reduce their workforce or their employees’ hours. It also means a renewed focus on the true cost-drivers of health care across all federal health programs, including Medicare and Medicaid. Bryan has supported legislation increasing access to affordable care through telemedicine and by allowing nurses with advanced training to provide specific patient care previously reserved for higher-priced doctors.
Bryan became the Chair of the Senate Health, Children, & Social Services committee in 2017. In that capacity, he has worked to find ways of addressing the high cost of healthcare and ensure that Delawareans have access to necessary medical professionals. He sponsored a piece of legislation to stop the flood of primary care providers who were leaving the state due to low reimbursement rates from private insurance companies. This legislation also formed a Primary Care Reform Collaborative to investigate ways of strengthening Delaware’s primary care system. He also sponsored legislation that requires that private employers cover fertility cares services for individuals diagnosed with infertility.
Bryan recognizes the opioid crisis as one of our nation and state’s largest public health crises. He sponsored legislation that prohibits health insurance plans from providing less favorable benefits for mental health and addiction services than they would for medical or surgical services. Bryan also sponsored legislation that would eliminate barriers for pharmacists to be able to dispense Naloxone. In conjunction with the Lieutenant Governor’s Office, Bryan worked to form the Behavioral Health Consortium, which is tasked with creating an integrated plan for action to address prevention, treatment, and recovery for mental health, substance use, and co-occurring disorders across the state.