Tackling Health Disparities in Children: The Role of Medicaid and CHIP in Reducing Disparities and Improving Health Outcomes for Children of Color

Racial Equity

12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Event Type


The Congressional Allergy & Asthma Caucus, the Congressional Black Caucus and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus held a congressional lunch briefing Thursday, July 30th at Rayburn House Office Building on Tackling Health Disparities in Children for Medicaid’s 50th anniversary.

Despite significant improvements in children’s health coverage over the last decade, children of color continue to experience notable health disparities. From infant mortality and dental care, to asthma treatment and mental health services, children of color have higher rates of disease, poorer overall health status, and more limited access to care.

While coverage is only one part of the disparities equation, Medicaid and CHIP are essential sources of health coverage for children of color whose families are more likely to be low-income. These programs insure more than half of Hispanic children (52%) and Black children (56%) compared to one-quarter of White (26%) and Asian (25%) children. The good news is that Medicaid and CHIP are making a difference in reducing racial and ethnic disparities by helping to connect children to the medical care they need.

The Congressional Allergy & Asthma Caucus, Congressional Black Caucus, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus for an educational staff briefing provided important information for policymakers on the current state of health disparities among children. Expert panelists shared the latest data on how children of color are faring as well as an overview of Medicaid and CHIP, with a focus on how these programs have been working to reduce health disparities. Panelists also highlighted best practices as well as areas where disparities continue to persist. The panelists each gave a short presentation and left time open for questions. (Download bios)

Download First Focus’s child health disparities fact sheet here.


Dr. Floyd Malveaux, M.D., Ph.D; Executive Director, Merck Childhood Asthma Network


Dr. Joseph Wright, M.D., M.P.H.; Chair of Pediatrics, Howard University (Download presentation)

Genevieve Kenney, M.A., Ph.D; Codirector and Senior Fellow, Health Policy Center, Urban Institute (Download presentation)

Dr. Tyra Bryant- Stephens, M.D.; Medical Director of the Community Asthma Prevention Program, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) (Download presentation)