Reports

Achieving Optimal Health and Healthcare for All Children: How We Can Eliminate Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Children’s Health and Healthcare

Health
Racial Equity

This report finds that children have ethnic and racial disparities across the health care spectrum, including mortality, access to care and use of services, prevention and population health, health status, adolescent health, chronic diseases, special healthcare needs, quality of care, and organ transplantation. And while having health insurance coverage results in a significant reduction of unmet needs for medical care, Latino and African American children account for 57 percent of all uninsured children in America, even though they only represent 37 percent of the total population of American children.

The report was authored by Glenn Flores, M.D., Director of the Division of General Pediatrics, Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health, and the Judith and Charles Ginsburg Chair in Pediatrics at the University of Texas Southwestern and Children’s Medical Center Dallas.

To reduce differences in rates of health insurance coverage and health disparities, Dr. Flores’ recommendations include:

  • The inclusion of the critically important aspects of Medicaid and CHIP that reduce health disparities as part of health reform. This includes consumer protections, language services, standards for access to care and cultural competency, comprehensive benefits, and limited or no cost sharing
  • Automated enrollment, and automated renewal of health coverage, to reduce the number of uninsured children and children’s health disparities
  • Additional funding for outreach and enrollment of kids as well as the establishment of a Center for Children’s Benefit Outreach and Enrollment, just as there is for senior citizens and the disabled as part of Medicare.
  • Extending insurance coverage to all children, including both documented and undocumented immigrants
  • Providing reimbursements for medical interpreter services in all insurance plans, as is found in Medicaid, CHIP, and Medicare

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