Health Coverage Rates For Lower Income Children Improving

Bolstered by the federal health care law, the number of lower income kids getting health coverage continues to improve, a recent study found.

During 2014, the first full year of the law’s implementation, 91 percent of children who were eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program were enrolled, according to the study by researchers at the Urban Institute. In 2013, that figure was 88.7 percent and only 81.7 percent in 2008. Medicaid and CHIP are both federal-state health coverage programs for lower-income residents, but CHIP provides coverage for kids whose families earn too much to qualify for Medicaid.

Given that coverage rates were already quite high for children, “I was surprised to see gains to such an extent in 2014, and for that to happen for so many different kinds of kids and in so many different places,” said Genevieve Kenney, co-director of the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center who was an author of the study.

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