If parents can’t get on Medicaid, what chance do kids have?
September 27, 2012
The Census Bureau just released new data on poverty, income and health insurance for last year, and the numbers aren’t pretty. Poverty is remaining at the levels we have seen for the past few years, and yes, it is still abysmal for children: 15 percent of Americans and 1 in 5 children live in poverty. And guess what? Lack of insurance is closely tied to that number. Nearly 14 percent of children living in poverty lacked health insurance last year, compared with under 10 percent for children overall, a number that stayed flat despite the decrease in the rate for everyone under 65.
The good news is that all low-income children were originally designed to get health insurance once the Affordable Care Act was passed. But we are now realizing the impact of that one little pesky provision that was struck down guaranteeing states would expand their Medicaid programs. At least seven governors have flat out said that they’ll refuse the expansion, and others may do that same.
So theoretically, stump speakers will tell you children who are living in poverty will remain eligible for health care. How confident are you that theory will match up with reality and that they will actually get it?