Georgetown University Report Finds Affordable Care Act Helps More Than Half of America’s Children to Access Preventive Care

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Georgetown University Research Institute Releases a 50-State Analysis on Impact of Preventive Care Provisions on Children

Joan Alker, Georgetown University Center for Children and Families

Preventive care keeps children healthy and more likely to avoid expensive trips to the ER for treatable conditions like asthma.

More than half of America’s children have gained or maintained access to preventive care services as a result of the Affordable Care Act according to a new fact sheet by Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families. The fact sheet provides an analysis of how many children have been helped in each state.

“Preventive care keeps children healthy and more likely to avoid expensive trips to the ER for treatable conditions like asthma,” said Georgetown University Center for Children and Families Co-Director Joan Alker. “The Affordable Care Act is already helping millions of children and their families through better access to cost-effective preventive health care coverage.”

Pediatrician-recommended check-ups, immunizations, screenings, developmental assessments and other preventive services can improve health outcomes by addressing problems before they progress into more complex diseases or create other complications. For many years, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) have recognized the importance of preventive care, helping millions of children access preventive care at little or no cost to families. The Affordable Care Act builds on the success of Medicaid and CHIP by removing cost and coverage barriers that could deter families from taking full advantage of preventive care services in private insurance plans, according to the Georgetown University report.

The five states with the largest proportion of children receiving preventive services either through private plans or Medicaid/CHIP include the District of Columbia (72.6%), Vermont (65%), Louisiana (64.8%), Arkansas (64.3%), and Mississippi (64 %). California, Texas, New York, Florida, and Illinois have the largest numbers of children keeping or gaining access to preventive care.

The fact sheet includes children covered by private health care plans, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

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Cathy Hope
Georgetown University Health Policy Institute
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