For Immediate Release
U. S. House Votes to Cover 11 Million Children, Including 4.1 Million Currently Uninsured
New Families USA Report Provides State-Level Data on Number of Children Covered in Each State by New Bill and the Percent Reduction in Uninsured Children in Each State
WASHINGTON - As one of the first legislative acts of the 111th Congress, the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday reauthorized the 11-year-old Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and extended health coverage to an additional 4.1 million children nationwide. The bill will provide coverage to more than 11 million children.
With the U.S. Senate poised to consider similar legislation for expedited consideration, Families USA, the national organization for health care consumers, today issued a report that looks at the impact of the House bill on the number of uninsured children in each state. Specifically, the report lists:
- The number of uninsured children in each state;
- The number of children in each state who would be covered in under the new legislation; and
- The percent reduction in the number of uninsured children in each state.
CHIP was created in 1997 and is intended to provide health coverage to children in working families with incomes that are too high to qualify for Medicaid but too low to make private insurance affordable.
A bipartisan effort to reauthorize CHIP when it was due to expire in 2007 drew a pair of presidential vetoes, and Congress approved a short-term extension without major changes in funding levels until March 2009.
“The expansion of children’s health coverage is a major victory for America’s families,” said Ron Pollack, Executive Director of Families USA. “The legislation will help to ensure that children get the health care they need when they need it, and it will enable children to learn and become productive citizens. The bill also represents a confidence-building down payment toward meaningful health care reform.”
Families USA is the national organization for health care consumers. It is nonprofit and nonpartisan and advocates for high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans.