WASHINGTON, Feb. 4 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- "This afternoon, Congress put America's families first on their agenda by reauthorizing the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Today's final vote in the House of Representatives delivers critical help to modest-income families struggling to make ends meet in challenging financial times," said Dr. Jane L. Delgado, President and CEO of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, the nation's leading Hispanic health advocacy group. "We are particularly proud that today's final legislation, which includes coverage for legal immigrant children and pregnant women, was a reflection of the leadership by House of Ways and Means Committee member and Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, Congressman Xavier Becerra," declared Dr. Delgado.
Today the Alliance announced its projections that the reauthorized SCHIP program will cover 1.5 million Hispanic children who currently do not have health insurance. Previous figures released by Families USA estimated that the program acted on today will cover almost one in two uninsured children in the country.
"Hispanic community-based organizations around the country played an important role in securing today's action on a bill that truly reflects our values as a nation," said Dr. Delgado. Early in consideration of SCHIP legislation by the 111th Congress, leaders of Alliance member organizations advocated for priorities that included coverage for legal immigrant children and pregnant women and financing through a 61 cent increase in the federal tobacco tax to $1 -- both are a part of today's final legislation.
"The Alliance thanks President Obama for his leadership in securing today's action. We look forward to SCHIP being the first health bill signed into law by the President in fulfillment of his commitment to make health insurance accessible for all," concluded Dr. Delgado.
The Alliance today also announced the availability of support for families seeking information or assistance in signing up for SCHIP and other health insurance programs for which they may be eligible. By calling the Alliance's toll-free Su Familia National Hispanic Family Health Helpline (1-866-783-2645 or 1-866-SU-FAMILIA) callers can speak to a health promotion advisor in Spanish or English to get answers to their questions and assistance with SCHIP eligibility.
About the National Alliance for Hispanic Health
The National Alliance for Hispanic Health is the nation's foremost source of information and trusted advocate for the health of Hispanics in the United States. The Alliance represents thousands of Hispanic health providers across the nation providing services to more than 15 million each year, making a daily difference in the lives of Hispanic communities and families.
For more information, visit http://www.hispanichealth.org/ or call the Alliance's Su Familia National Hispanic Family Health Helpline at 1-866-783-2645. National Alliance for Hispanic Health
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