Children’s Action Alliance Statement by Dana Wolfe Naimark, President and CEO: Supreme Court Ruling on Affordable Care Act Gives Arizona Leaders the Chance to Improve Health Care for Children and Families
Contact: Dana Wolfe Naimark, (602) 266-0707 #214 work, (602) 882-5755 cell
Today’s ruling by the United States Supreme Court on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act gives us the opportunity to bring affordable health care to all Arizonans, regardless of their health status, the size of their employer, or their income.
Arizona children and families have already won important victories through the Affordable Care Act, including tax credits for small businesses, 60,000 young adults covered through their parents’ insurance, and sick children keeping access to treatment because health insurance plans can’t put time limits on their care. With today’s Court decision, children with asthma, diabetes, or other conditions can’t be denied coverage.
It is clear that decisions to improve health care do not come only from the Supreme Court or Washington, DC. Decisions made here in Arizona will continue to affect whether children get the care they need to grow up healthy and go to school ready to learn. Our state’s leaders face important decisions affecting the health of millions of Arizonans, as well as our economy. After reckless decisions that have moved health care backward, we have the chance to move forward for healthier kids and families.
The Supreme Court decision appears to give states the ability to opt out of expanding their Medicaid programs under the law. While this will certainly prompt political debates, there is no debate about the value of Medicaid health coverage to children and to our economy. AHCCCS, Arizona’s version of Medicaid, keeps over 600,000 Arizona children healthy. It is respected as a national model that has among the highest quality and lowest costs of any state. The full cost of AHCCCS for children who become eligible from an expansion will be paid for by the federal funds.
Children’s Action Alliance urges Arizona voters to ask all candidates for the state legislature about their positions on health care for children and families. Visit our website, www.azchildren.org, to learn more about issues and where candidates stand.
Children’s Action Alliance is an independent voice for Arizona children at the state capitol and in the community. CAA works to improve children’s health, education, and security through information and action.