Last night the U.S. Senate passed a 35 billion dollar increase in funding over the next five years for S-CHIP, the State Childrenâ€™s Health Insurance Program that pays for Connecticutâ€™s HUSKY B. President Bush has threatened to veto the funding, which he calls federalized medicine.Â WNPRâ€™s Emily Reddy reports from Washington.
The S-CHIP program provides health insurance for about 6.6 million children whose parents make too much money to be covered by Medicaid but not enough to buy private insurance. More than 23 thousand children in Connecticut are covered by the program, and if the measure for increased funding passes, the state could cover twice as many.Â Representative Chris Murphy said he hopes that President Bush will see how popular the bill is and decide to sign it.
"I donâ€™t understand how the president canâ€™t at least be
supporting healthcare for children. Republican governors, including our own in
Connecticut, are supporting it. I hope that they can prevail on him to change
The president backs a bill that would add five billion dollars to S-CHIP over the next five years. However, he has also called for a limit on coverage for children whose families make the most. Such measures could lead to fewer kids with insurance, according to Kaiser Family Foundation policy analyst Robin Rudowitz.
â€œThe 5 billion over the next 5 years would not be adequate
to even maintain the coverage for kids who are already enrolled in the program.â€
The bill has enough support in the Senate to override a veto, but not in the House.Â For WNPR, Iâ€™m Emily Reddy in Washington.