Dear State Legislators:
Despite rising health costs and declines in the availability of job-based coverage, AHCCCS and KidsCare have dramatically reduced the rate of uninsured children in Arizona from 25 percent in 1998 to 15 percent today. We strongly urge you to continue this successful trend by strengthening KidsCare and AHCCCS. We ask you 1) to support outreach efforts with state policy and funding to reach more eligible children, and 2) to extend KidsCare to reach more uninsured children in working families.
Numerous studies confirm lack of health coverage has detrimental effects on children. Yet 250,000 of our Arizona kids - approximately 3,500 school busloads of children - do not have the health coverage they need to stay healthy and do well in school. A vast majority of these children currently qualify for existing health programs such as KidsCare and AHCCCS; however, inadequate outreach and advertising have kept these programs a secret from too many families.
Arizona families work hard to provide for their children, but many lack access to employer-sponsored insurance and simply cannot afford the high cost of private health insurance. We ask you to lead Arizona to healthier children and stronger families. With your votes this legislative session, you can do more to cover uninsured children by supporting outreach efforts and making KidsCare available to the working middle class struggling to afford health insurance.
Investing in the health of Arizona\'s children today will make our state a better place tomorrow.
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