Texas has both the highest rate and the greatest number of uninsured children of any state. 21.8% of all kids in the state, representing over 1.5 million children, lack health coverage. This is more more than the entire populations
of 14 different US States. Addressing this problem, Texas lawmakers
are poised to take a large and bi-partisan bite out of the number of
uninsured children. HB 2962, sponsored by Rep. Garnet Coleman, will expand the state's CHIP program to an additional 80,000 children.
This Dispatch outlines the expanded SCHIP program, which is not only important for individual families but also should be a critical part of state economic recovery plans. The new law increases SCHIP funding by $44 billion over the next 5 years. This is on top of the "baseline" of $5 billion annually, bringing the total to $69 billion -- double the amount made available to states in 2008. These billions of dollars represent new health care jobs and spending for states that take full advantage of the program.
Prior to last Monday's White House health care forum in Des Moines, Iowa, one of fiveregional forums being held across the country, the Iowa Senate passed two significant
health care reform measures - one symbolic and one substantive.