From the inbox:
As one of the leading members of the U.S. House of Representative negotiating health care legislation, U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz praised the U.S. Senate for including legislation she authored to protect health coverage for children with chronic medical conditions in the final package of amendments to The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
The legislation would ensure that children suffering from debilitating and life threatening illnesses, such as cancer, diabetes, asthma and heart disease, have access to comprehensive and affordable coverage and would prohibit employers and insurers from imposing pre-existing condition limitations on children before they reach the age of 25. In both the House and Senate bill, there is a commitment to end insurance discrimination against pre-existing conditions for all Americans.
“With 20 percent of school-aged children suffering from chronic diseases, it is imperative that we ensure every child gets the care and medical attention they need and deserve,” Schwartz said. “The provision included in the Senate bill will immediately prohibit health insurers from denying coverage to children with pre-existing conditions. This legislation ends a failed policy that has enabled insurance companies to deny millions of children who need health care coverage the most.”
The congresswoman’s legislation would help nine million American children who are uninsured obtain the insurance they need to ensure prompt treatment for their chronic conditions. In addition, it would potentially help millions of children who are at risk for becoming uninsured if their parents lose their job and health insurance in these difficult economic times.
The package of amendments, which passed in the Senate 60-39 last weekend, moves us one step closer to final passage of health care reform. The House passed its version of health reform, The Affordable Health Care for America Act, on November 7th. The two Houses will come together to reconcile differences in the two bills and a final bill is expected to be signed by President Obama in 2010.