As of 2016, one in 19 children in the US were uninsured—more than 3.9 million. Poor children and children of color have worse access to healthcare and worse outcomes than their higher-income, white counterparts. And since children with unmet health needs fall behind developmentally and have trouble catching up physically, socially and academically, this is no small problem.
But despite tremendous progress expanding access to health coverage to children across America, Texas has the highest rate of uninsured children in the country, with nine percent of children uninsured, nearly double the national average. Poor children and children of color have worse access to healthcare and worse outcomes than their higher-income, white counterparts.
All children in America should have access to health and mental health coverage and care that is comprehensive, affordable and easy to get and keep regardless of income, zip code, place of birth or immigration status.
Since 1999, CDF-Texas has collaborated with partners in the Texas CHIP Coalition and regional coalitions across the state including the Gulf Coast CHIP Coalition, Children’s Health Coalition of the Rio Grande Valley, Equal Voice Network, and RGV Border Health Coalition to champion access to health coverage and care for all Texas children. Our efforts to expand coverage for children, protect and invest in children’s health in the state budget, and improve outreach and enrollment systems for children and families have resulted in more than one million more children gaining health coverage. CDF-TX is working to protect and build upon these gains to ensure that every Texas child has a Healthy Start.
We work to ensure all children have access to health and mental health coverage and care that is comprehensive, affordable, child-appropriate, and easy to get and keep regardless of income, zip code, place of birth of immigration status. To do so CDF believes we must:
- Hold the Line to Ensure Children Do Not Move Backward: Despite historic gains in health coverage for children, Medicaid, CHIP and the ACA continue to face serious attacks. CDF continues to fight to protect and strengthen these critical sources of health coverage for children to ensure children continue to move forward, not backward.
- Finish the Job of Enrolling All Eligible Children in Comprehensive, Affordable Health Coverage: CDF seeks to maximize the promise of Medicaid, CHIP and the ACA by ensuring every eligible child is enrolled in affordable health coverage that guarantees all necessary services, is affordable and easy to get and to keep. CDF works to improve enrollment and retention in health coverage by supporting policies that eliminate bureaucratic barriers and through proven strategies, such as express lane eligibility and partnerships between school districts and community agencies.
- Advance Innovative Policies and Practices to Improve Children’s Access to Health Coverage and Care: CDF sees exciting opportunities to maximize child health coverage and outcomes and has long championed the need to move our nation toward a seamless, universal system of coverage for children. We work to ensure child-appropriate coverage is central to any health care reform proposals from their inception.