New Study Cautions States About Changes to Medicaid Child Health Programs

eAlert 935b0d33-2f68-4630-bb53-078cffbe2d00

<p>The debate in Congress over reauthorizing the State Children's Health Insurance Program--set to expire in September 2007--has brought children's health coverage to the forefront of the political agenda. A new <em>Health Affairs</em> article by Commonwealth Fund researchers provides a timely reminder that attention needs to be paid to the scope and quality of that coverage.<br><br>In <a href="/cnlib/pub/enews_clickthrough.htm?enews_item_id=27167&return_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Ecmwf%2Eorg%2Fpublications%2Fpublications%5Fshow%2Ehtm%3Fdoc%5Fid%3D467997%26%23doc467997">"Medicaid: Health Promotion and Disease Prevention for School Readiness,"</a> the Fund's Edward Schor, M.D., Melinda Abrams, M.S., and Katherine Shea focus on the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment (EPSDT) program--the child health portion of Medicaid. Schor and his coauthors discuss the importance of health promotion, disease prevention, and developmental services in preparing young children for success in school and later in life. <br><br>The authors recommend actions that the federal government and the states can take to ensure that public insurance programs covering disadvantaged children not only maximize their health but promote development. Health insurance coverage for children should promote healthy development, not just treat illness, they explain.</p>