Media Statement: Experts Agree: Federal SCHIP Restrictions are Good Policy

Published August 21, 2007

(Chicago, Illinois – August 21, 2007) Today, the White House called for restricting expansion of the nationally funded, state-controlled State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Some states already have extended the program well beyond its intended audience: children in working families who cannot afford private insurance but are not eligible for Medicaid. States now will be required to prove they cover at least 95 percent of eligible low-income children before expanding coverage to higher-income children.

The following comments on the White House’s move are from Trevor Martin, director of government relations for The Heartland Institute, and Steve Stanek, a Heartland research fellow and managing editor for Budget & Tax News, a monthly Heartland publication.

You may quote directly from this statement or contact Martin or Stanek directly for further comment.

Trevor Martin
[email protected]
Government Relations Director

“Restricting expansion of SCHIP will ensure the program continues to serve its intended purpose: Providing health insurance to families unable to afford private insurance and ineligible for Medicaid. Further expansion will only crowd out private insurers, leading us down the path to socialized health care.”

Steve Stanek [email protected]
Research Fellow
Managing Editor, Budget & Tax News

“The Congressional Budget Office estimates 50 percent of new SCHIP funds would go to children in families who drop private insurance to get the subsidies, and many private economists say the figure could be even higher. This would waste billions of dollars and make families that are perfectly able to care for themselves dependent on government.”

Further information on the SCHIP program is available in this Research & Commentary from The Heartland Institute.

For further information about The Heartland Institute, please contact Harriette Johnson, media relations manager, at 312/377-4000 or email [email protected].