Press Release

RELEASE — ACHP Announces 2021 Legislative Champion Award Recipients

Award honors Congressional commitment to high-quality, affordable health coverage and care

Washington, D.C. (December 13th, 2021) – The Alliance of Community Health Plans (ACHP) is pleased to present its 2021 Legislative Champion awards for visionary leadership to expand access to high-quality health coverage and care. The 2021 recipients — Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Representative Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) and Representative Ron Kind (D-WI) — are honored as long-time partners in the mission to improve affordability and outcomes in the health care system.

“We applaud these legislators for championing bipartisan reforms that prioritize higher quality coverage and care at a better price,” said ACHP President and CEO Ceci Connolly. “Each recipient has led the charge to improve value, equity and accessibility in our health system, and we are grateful for their commitment to improving the lives of the communities they serve.”

ACHP honors Senator Cortez Masto for her leadership on the Senate Finance Committee in continued support for telehealth, drug pricing reform and coordinated coverage and care. The Senator has also led on key issues to expand access to care, including introducing the bipartisan Ensuring Parity in Medicare Advantage and PACE for Audio-Only Telehealth Act as well as her ongoing efforts to ensure families can purchase affordable health coverage.

“Nevadans’ health is my top priority in the Senate, and I will always work to lower costs and increase access to quality, affordable health care,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “The Medicare Advantage program is so important to our work to get Nevada’s seniors the health care options they need, including through telehealth. I’ll keep pushing in the Senate to make sure Nevadans have what they need to stay healthy during the pandemic and beyond.”

ACHP honors Congressman Bilirakis for his work to advance policies that help ensure America’s seniors can safely access critical health care services. As a cosponsor of the bipartisan Ensuring Parity in Medicare Advantage and PACE for Audio-Only Telehealth Act, Representative Bilirakis seeks to increase rural and underserved seniors’ access to telehealth services, a priority for ACHP and its member companies.

“I am humbled to receive this award in recognition for my advocacy on behalf of seniors.  Protecting access to quality health care options and enhancing the programs available to Medicare beneficiaries is a top priority of mine,” said Congressman Bilirakis. “As a strong proponent of Medicare Advantage, I know how important this program is to my constituents in providing high quality and affordable health care. I will always continue to fight to protect and strengthen the integrity of this critical program to deliver better outcomes and lower costs for Medicare patients in my district and across the nation.”

ACHP honors Congressman Kind for his long-time commitment to expanding access to high-value, high-quality coverage and care for all Americans. While serving on the Ways and Means Committee and the Subcommittee on Health, Representative Kind introduced the Medicare Advantage Quality Payment Relief Act to ensure the millions of seniors in top-performing Medicare Advantage plans can access enhanced health care services and reduced premiums.

“I’m truly honored to be named a 2021 Legislative Champion by the Alliance of Community Health Plans,” said Congressman Kind. “Access to quality, affordable coverage is critical to the health and wellbeing of communities across Wisconsin. I’m committed to supporting the great work of those who are helping to improve outcomes in our health care systems, and I will continue to fight to ensure all Americans can receive the quality care they deserve.”

ACHP is pleased to recognize Senator Cortez Masto, Congressman Bilirakis and Congressman Kind for their commitment to transforming health care delivery and the health of the nation. The recipients will be presented with the awards at an ACHP event this coming spring. ACHP will honor new Legislative Champions annually.

About ACHP

The Alliance of Community Health Plans (ACHP) represents the nation’s top-performing non-profit health plans to improve affordability and outcomes in the health care system. Members are provider-aligned health organizations that provide high-quality coverage and care to tens of millions of Americans. They are leading the industry in practical, proven reforms around primary care delivery, value-based payment and data-driven systems improvement. Learn more at the ACHP website and follow us on Twitter for the latest health insights.