Sanders Renews Effort to Protect Children's Health Insurance from Bush Administration Cutbacks

Senator Bernie Sanders renewed his call on the Bush administration to work with Congress to expand a popular and effective children's health insurance program. New rules announced by administration will leave more than 2,000 Vermont children who are currently enrolled without coverage.

A new actuality was recorded by Sanders may be accessed on the Actuality System (1-800-511-0763) with ID 1536 or on the web at http://demradio.senate.gov/actualities/sanders/sanders070822.mp3

"We are the only major nation which does not provide health insurance for all children. Instead of throwing kids off health care, Bush should be working with us to cover more kids," Sanders said.

In a letter to state health officials, the Bush administration outlined new federal rules that limit access to the Children's Health Insurance Program. Sanders said the new eligibility restrictions could be especially devastating in Vermont. About 2,000 of the 3,000 children enrolled in the Dr. Dynasaur program could lose coverage or the state would have to pay the entire amount for their insurance.

The State Children's Health Insurance Program was created in 1997 to help children whose families couldn't afford insurance but didn't qualify for Medicaid.

Both the Senate and House have passed legislation that would expand the program. Sanders has been a leader in the Senate effort to provide health care for more children.