Health Care Access and Insurance: Care is Needed and Deserved
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, health coverage provides children access to needed care and promotes improved health, education, and financial success over the long-term. Children with health coverage fare better on measures of access to care compared to uninsured children, and access for children with Medicaid and CHIP is comparable to access for children with private coverage along these measures.
In 2020, during the federal COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE), Medicaid and CHIP participants benefited from stabilization of coverage. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) reported that about five million children, or 14% of children, gained public coverage between February 2020 and December 2021.
In 2022, according to the Kids Count Data Center, 5,200 children under the age of 18 in Allegheny County remain uninsured. Across Pennsylvania, more than 18,000 children under the age of three lack insurance coverage – the fourth highest in the country. Georgetown Center for Children and Families reports that although children in families earning at least 200% of the federal poverty level have seen their uninsured rate drop recently, those in the lowest income levels still haven’t seen these improvements. As a partner in Thriving PA, Allies for Children continues advocacy efforts around access to affordable and public insurance for children and families.