The Children's Health Insurance Program

Essay by Lekyla21University, Master'sA, October 2009

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Medicaid has long been the welfare program for the poor, providing medical and long-term care to more than sixteen percent of the population. Medicaid has expanded to cover fifty seven million people in 2005 (Feldstein). The federal government spends billions on the Medicaid system. The federal dollars that each state receives assist local states to provide a less expensive approach to providing access to medical care. One such program was created in 1997, the State Children's Health Insurance Program provided health coverage to more than seven million children. The recent bill approved in early February of this year by President Obama to renew the State Children's Health Insurance Program has brought care to millions of children in the United States. The new bill is expected to insure four million additional children to the program. The signed Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009, officially extending the successful program through 2013 and provided and additional 32.8

billion in funds( The Nation's Health). The previous presidential administration vetoed prior bills that were in favor of renewing the Children's Health Program. The lack of concern for families and health insurance were not a top priority for previous administrations. The demand for such a program comes at a time when many families have lost jobs due to the state of the economy.

The State Children's Health Insurance Program fills a critical gap for families who make too much to quality for Medicaid but too little to afford private insurance. The new law for The State Children's Health Insurance Program provided funding to support outreach activities as well as new tools to streamline the enrollment process (The Nation's Health). Many hard working families with children are unaware they are eligible for state insurance programs. They become frustrated with the process and often encounter...