The well-being of our children is linked to health coverage. With coverage, children have access to consistent care and timely and appropriate treatment. Along with Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) has been successful in reducing the number of uninsured children in the United States. Since CHIP’s implementation we have cut in half the number of children without insurance. CHIP provides children with access to quality, affordable health care and gives their families peace of mind about their health and financial security.
Last night, the U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly to continue funding CHIP for another two years. Maine Senators King and Collins stood with the majority of their colleagues and supported this important investment. Last month, Congresswoman Pingree and Congressman Poliquin voted for the CHIP funding extension, ensuring that children have access to the care they need to grow and thrive. We are grateful to all of them for their support of Maine kids!
The Maine Children’s Alliance would have preferred a four year extension of CHIP and we were proud to see that both of our Senators supported an amendment that would have added two more years to the life of this important program. But the amendment fell 10 votes short of the 60 votes it needed to pass. Child advocates will have work to do in the not too distant future to make sure that CHIP funding is extended again and MCA will of course be a voice for kids when that time comes.
But today let’s celebrate this win for children’s health. CHIP will continue to provide kids with the health coverage they require to develop and grow to reach their full potential.