McMorris Rodgers Votes to Renew Children’s Health Insurance Program

(Washington, D.C.)  Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers today voted in favor of a bill to provide health insurance for uninsured children without cutting benefits to seniors. The bill will renew the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) for another five years and protect over 6.6 million children who currently receive health insurance through this program.

“This is not a perfect bill but does offer a needed safety net to provide health insurance to those children who need it most,” said Cathy McMorris Rodgers. “I continue to hear from people all throughout Eastern Washington about the challenges of affording health insurance. This program has played an important role in ensuring access to health care for low-income children. I do believe we must focus on developing new solutions to address the growing number of uninsured. Government-run health care is not the answer to our nation’s current health care problems.”

For Eastern Washington, the final SCHIP bill will safeguard the Medicare Advantage plans held by over 10,000 seniors. It will also protect physician-owned hospitals and ensure two clinics in Okanagan County will remain open. In addition, the bill also includes a “fix” for Washington state that will allow it receive the full allotment of federal SCHIP funds.

The SCHIP bill supported by McMorris Rodgers represents a compromise between the House and the Senate. It would cover three to four million uninsured children by investing $35 billion in additional funding in children’s health insurance over five years. It focuses on enrolling the lowest income eligible children first, reduces federal assistance if states expand coverage to middle-income children and phases out coverage to adults.

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