health-care.jpgU.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi expressed confidence in San Francisco today on the second anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act that the controversial health care law would stand up to scrutiny by the U.S. Supreme Court.

“We believe that we knew what we were doing when we wrote the bill,” Pelosi said, speaking at a ribbon cutting for Practice Fusion, a rapidly growing firm providing a free online medical records program.

Pelosi said the Affordable Care Act, which has been challenged on the grounds that its requirement that everyone carry health insurance is unconstitutional, has already benefited millions.

“If you have a child with a preexisting condition, no longer can that child be discriminated against,” Pelosi said. “In 2014 no one with a preexisting condition can be discriminated against.”

Within her district alone, she noted in a statement, as a result of the law, 5,300 seniors receive prescription drug discounts worth $3.5 million, 6,600 young adults have obtained health insurance, 66,000 seniors received Medicare preventative services without copays or deductibles, and 17,000 children and 130,000 adults have health insurance that covers preventative services without copays, coinsurance or deductibles.

Pelosi said Practice Fusion exemplifies the kind of innovation that lawmakers had in mind when they passed the law. Reports have suggested the U.S. health care system could save hundreds of millions every year by switching to electronic medical records, she said.

Practice Fusion’s technology fits with a federal push for digitalized medical records that can allow the effectiveness of doctors to be tracked and evaluated, among other benefits, according to Emily Peters, a company spokeswoman.

Founded in 2005 in San Francisco, Practice Fusion, which has around 150 employees, is hiring for 40 open positions and expects to hire more people by the end of the year. The company moved into a new building, the former home of NBC radio at 420 Taylor St., in December, and recently completed a $1 million renovation.

The company’s move to the Tenderloin allows it to benefit from the same payroll tax break received by Twitter, and will allow it to stay in the city long term, Peters said.

Sara Gaiser, Bay City News

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