On Friday evening, the Trump administration quietly released a proclamation mandating the denial of visas to all immigrants seeking to enter the United States if they are unable to prove their ability to readily obtain health insurance or pay for the full cost of their healthcare. The proclamation, which is set to go into effect on November 3rd, demands that immigrants prove they will be able to obtain unsubsidized health insurance within 30 days of their arrival or that they possess “the financial resources to pay for reasonably foreseeable medical costs” as a prerequisite for the approval of a visa. As such, all immigrants will have to obtain their health insurance without the use of Medicaid or Affordable Care Act health insurance subsidies.
AIDS United strongly condemns this proclamation as a behind the scenes end-run to restrict legal immigration to the United States. This proclamation is little more than a wealth and health test for any immigrant trying to come to the United States. And, when combined with the Public Charge rule change that came before it, the proclamation will serve as an almost insurmountable roadblock for any immigrant living with HIV seeking to live in the U.S.
AIDS United stands with many health organizations in opposition to this rule and urges the administration to reverse course. If we are to end the domestic and global HIV epidemics by 2030, our government must eliminate barriers to care for every person in America and abroad living with and affected by HIV.