FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Expanding Health Insurance for Children Is Good for Families and the Economy, Ness Says, Lauding Inclusion of Quality Measures
Statement of Debra L. Ness, President, National Partnership for Women & Families
WASHINGTON, DC — February 4, 2009 — “In signing the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 into law, President Obama is taking the nation one step farther away from the days when mean-spirited, counter-productive policies prevailed. This bill is important not just for children, not just for families, but also for our economic recovery. Families need real economic security, and that will only happen when we reform health care. Meaningful reform begins by covering children.
Since 1997, the Children’s Health Insurance Program has been a vital lifeline for low-income children in working families whose parents earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but too little to purchase private health insurance. That lifeline will now extend to more families in need. That means fewer children will be uninsured and more kids and families will have access to the basic health services they need. Health outcomes will improve as a result.
We are especially pleased that the law includes important provisions to improve health care quality by working with states to strengthen quality improvement efforts, and develop additional quality measures appropriate for pediatric care.
We commend lawmakers for rejecting a callous measure that would have continued a five-year waiting period for legal immigrant children to be covered, and numerous amendments that would have harmed women’s access to reproductive health care.
In signing the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 into law, President Obama has made this a good day for the nation.”
The National Partnership is a non-profit, non-partisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting access to quality health care, fairness in the workplace, and policies that help women and men meet the dual demands of work and family.