Passage of Stopgap Funding Bill Is a Positive Step Forward for Children’s Health Insurance Program

Now Congress should finish the job by approving a permanent solution for young immigrants and funds for other health programs that remain in limbo

(BOSTON, MA) -- Statement of Robert Restuccia, executive director of Community Catalyst, regarding House and Senate passage of a stopgap measure to fund the government through February 8, 2018. 

“Millions of parents across the country can now rest a little easier knowing that their children will be able to go to the doctor when they get sick. Today, after months of unnecessary delay culminating in a government shutdown, Congress finally passed a continuing resolution that includes funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

“The bill’s six-year guarantee of coverage for nine million children across the country is a positive development. However, while we are relieved that CHIP will be funded and the government will reopen for business, the process that led to today’s agreement was troubling. Moreover, overdue measures addressing the fate of young immigrants and funding for community health centers and other health programs that are running out of federal support remain unresolved.

“It is paramount that Congress and the president act quickly to advance a permanent solution for the more than 800,000 “Dreamers” whose parents brought them to this country when they were children. Further, Congress should act swiftly to extend funding for local community health centers and other vital health programs that provide care for millions of families. The failure to resolve these issues in a timely fashion has also forced a delay in addressing other issues such as providing additional relief to the hurricane-ravaged health care system in Puerto Rico.

“We call upon President Trump and members in both chambers to work in a bipartisan fashion to move forward a pro-family agenda that includes funding for community health centers and a solution for Dreamers that gives them the opportunity to continue contributing to our culture and economy. These issues enjoy bipartisan and strong public support. Community Catalyst and our allies across the country will continue to urge Congress to address them and do better for our families and our communities.” 

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About Community Catalyst
Community Catalyst is a national, non-profit consumer advocacy organization founded in 1998 with the belief that affordable quality health care should be accessible to everyone. We work in partnership with national, state and local organizations, policymakers, and philanthropic foundations to ensure consumer interests are represented wherever important decisions about health and the health system are made: in communities, courtrooms, statehouses and on Capitol Hill. For more information, visit www.communitycatalyst.org. Follow us on Twitter @healthpolicyhub.

 

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