“While the American Academy of Pediatrics is grateful that Medicaid remains
intact and that children’s health care coverage remains protected as a result
of the U.S. Senate’s decision not to vote on the Graham-Cassidy health care
legislation, we will not rest until we ensure that these gains are not a
temporary outcome but a permanent guarantee for children.
“Right now, Congress has the opportunity to immediately pass a bipartisan
bill to extend funding for five years for the Children’s Health Insurance
Program (CHIP), which is currently set to expire in just four days. CHIP
provides health care coverage for nearly 9 million children and is designed
specifically around their needs. As Graham-Cassidy consumed time and attention
in the Senate, needed attention to CHIP was lost, even though a bipartisan bill
has already been introduced in the Senate and the program enjoys widespread
support among both chambers and both political parties.
“Whether through looming Medicaid threats like those included in Graham-Cassidy
or a lack of timely extension of funding for CHIP, children and families’ lives
are hanging in the balance of Congress’ failure to act in their best interest.
As pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical
specialists, we cannot tolerate our patients facing an uncertain future.
“The AAP urges Congress to act, by making two commitments for children:
protecting Medicaid and extending CHIP funding before time runs out. Both of
these programs are vital to children, and vital to our nation’s future.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics
is an organization of 66,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical
subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health,
safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For
more information, visit www.aap.org
and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds.