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Texans Look For Options To Give More Kids Health Insurance

A mother in Texas recently lost access to affordable health insurance for her young twin boys. Not because she lost her job, but because she found one. The young mom who had relied on the state’s health insurance for children program to provide care for her sons for six years, received a better paying job that put her above the income limit to qualify for the program. Her children were dropped, and now she says instead of relying on the state to provide for her kid’s healthcare she prays.

She is not alone among Texans looking for salvation from the high cost of medical insurance. There are thousands of children in Texas of working families who’s income is too high to qualify for CHIP, but too low to purchase most private health insurance plans available in the state. Many in Texas are lobbying to raise the limits to allow more to afford health coverage.

However the problem is further reaching than that. There is a total estimate of almost one and half million children in Texas without health insurance who do not qualify for CHIP, and not only because of the income requirements. Still it is those in the middle class, people earning as much as 50 to 60,000.00 per year that say they still cannot find affordable private health insurance for their children in the state. Raising the income limits would help, but also would creating more affordable health insurance options for working families. According to the sate departments of health and human services over 40,000 kids were dropped from CHIP Heath Insurance last year due to exceeding the income limits.

Funding for the CHIP program expires at the end of September. Congress has called for an increase in funding of the affordable health insurance for children program of 60 billion dollars over the next 5 years. The House 75 billion. President Bush wants to increase funding by only 30 billion. He believes as do many of his fellow Republicans, including Representatives from Texas, that any more than that puts the country on a slippery slope to fully government sponsored health insurance. The president has threatened to veto any legislation that calls for more then he wants to fund the program.