Don’t Throw Children Under the School Bus: Medicaid Is a Smart Investment in Our Nation’s Children

Real Clear Health

By: Joan Alker

Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families’ executive director, Joan Alker, talks about the new report that CCF is working on – covering the research on how Medicaid coverage has been leading and will continue leading to healthier and longer lives, further educational attainment, and more beneficial futures overall.

A wise teacher once told me that no matter how good of an educator you are, you can’t teach to an empty desk. If our nation is going to keep its competitive edge into the future, we need to keep our school desks full of healthy children who are ready to learn. In order to achieve that goal, we must ensure that all families can afford the developmental screenings and treatment pediatricians recommend so their children can grow up to become healthy, successful adults.

Medicaid provides millions of America’s children with that critical link to health and success. Children make up the single largest group of individuals who rely on Medicaid for their health care coverage. Medicaid has been working for kids for over 50 years now. What’s more, Medicaid includes a unique child-centered benefit package known as Early Periodic Screening Diagnostic and Treatment (EPSDT) so that children are not denied coverage for services they need to stay on track developmentally. This important provision helps our nation’s most vulnerable children have the best shot possible of reaching their full potential.

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