Democrats have tried to expand Medicaid and bring more transparency to the insurance market. 

It is critical we help the youngest Texans access the preventative and life saving healthcare needed to become healthy adults. 

Right now the leadership of this state has created policies that knowingly kicked thousands of eligible children form their healthcare coverage due to administrative red tape and unnecessary renewals. 

We need to make sure that all children that receive Medicaid coverage in this state have continuous 12-month care. The mid-year reviews create delays, cause problems that parents have no time to fix and needlessly erect barriers to care for kids in need. 

We know 12-month care can work. It works for the Children’s Healthcare Program and it can work for kids on Medicaid as well. Forcing parents and caregivers to constantly deal with administrative paperwork creates a cycle of children gaining and losing health insurance, missing appointments and losing opportunities for preventative care. 

Ultimately, more uninsured kids and less preventative care leads to more trips to the emergency room, which is more expensive for everyone and can lead to devastating outcomes for our kids. 

Texas needs to implement continuous eligibility for Medicaid for our children. This guarantees ongoing coverage for one of our most vulnerable and precious populations. Even if the family experiences a change in income during the year. 

This change has the added benefit of saving money for our state agencies, who waste time and resources conducting inefficient, inaccurate reviews that leads to a bureaucratic burden of cycling a child on and off health insurance multiple times per year. 

Editor’s Note: The above guest column is based on the remarks made by state Rep. Sergio Muñoz of Mission during a press conference hosted by the Texas House Democratic Caucus to introduce the “Affordable Health Care for Every Texan” plan.

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