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The False "Public Versus Private" Choice For Children’s Health Coverage

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Publication Date: June 2007

Publisher(s): Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (Washington, D.C.)

Author(s): Judith Solomon

Special Collection: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Topic: Health (Health services for children)

Keywords: Economic projections; State budgets; Health insurance; Health care costs

Type: Report


Most Medicaid and SCHIP beneficiaries already receive their coverage through private health plans that contract with their states. The real issue is that Medicaid and SCHIP have established standards to ensure that children who receive coverage through private plans receive the health care they need and that public funds are spent effectively. Proposals by the Heritage Foundation and other groups would essentially eliminate those standards and protections. The choice Congress faces, therefore, is whether to maintain measures designed to ensure value and accountability for public funds.