Doctors urge state leaders to oppose repeal of Affordable Care Act

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COLUMBIA - On the day the Senate voted against repealing the Affordable Care Act, More than 80 doctors and medical students across Missouri sent a letter to top state officials asking them to voice opposition to continuing efforts to roll back President Obama's health plan.

The letter was sent to Gov. Eric Greitens, Lt. Gov. Mike Parson, Attorney General Josh Hawley, State Treasurer Eric Schmitt, House Speaker Todd Richardson and Minority Floor Leader Gail McCann Beatty.

KOMU 8 News reached out to Greitens' spokesman Parker Briden, Parson's spokesman Tyler Habiger and Richardson's office. 

Habiger said he had not seen the letter and would not comment on something he had not seen. 

Briden did not respond to our voice mail and Richardson's office did not return our call.

Dr. Ed Weisbart, who signed the letter, said he wants to hear what state officials think of the ACA repeal effort. 

"We didn’t elect them to be quiet and silent, we elected them to say what they think. I don’t always agree with that they think, but we’re at a really important crossroads in our country and I think anybody who’s been elected to office, we deserve to know what they think about this bill," Weisbart said.

He said leaders may be silent because of the likely reaction of their constituents.

"We the people should know for whom we’re voting and if they’re not going to tell us what they think, they must have a reason for not telling us what they think, they think we don’t wanna know,” Weisbart said.

He said it's tough for a doctor when politics are put ahead of patient care.

"For political and economic reasons, be told 'not so fast doctor, this patient is not one of the patients who actually deserves your care.' Well that’s, I can’t sleep at night when I have to deal with that," Weisbart said.

While the Senate rejected outright repeal Wednesday, opponents of the ACA are still trying to enact legislation to undo key aspects of the act.