Why we oppose the CSSA

Last week, our partners in the Coalition on Human Needs sent a letter to members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee expressing their opposition to H.R. 4725, which would reduce funding to various health services needed by low-income children and adults.

The so-called “Common Sense Savings Act” would cut $25 billion over the next 10 years. This will severely limit access to health care for low-income families and children. Our specific concerns include:

  • A reduction in the federal commitment to children’s health care.Lowering federal funding for the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) would deny access and benefits to low-income children (currently 8 million children access health care through SCHIP).
  • Restricting states’ ability to qualify for federal Medicaid funding. This would drive down reimbursement rates and make health care more costly for low-income families.
  • Denying Medicaid for incarcerated individuals who require treatment outside prisons. This would limit prisoners’ access to necessary treatments and make it harder for them to successfully reenter society, making our communities less safe and prosperous.
  • Eliminating the Prevention and Public Health Fund. This would deplete emergency resources that states rely on to prevent and respond to public health crises—especially those affecting low-income and minority communities. Currently, the Fund is being used for:
    • Diabetes prevention
    • Vaccine coverage for children and adults
    • Improved outreach to minority communities affected by certain chronic diseases and health risk factors
    • Rapid response to outbreaks for infectious diseases such as Zika
    • Preventing childhood lead poisoning

“When health costs are shifted to states,” the letter concludes, “the poorest states are likely to deny services to the people most in need.” Every Child Matters will continue to oppose legislation that seeks to balance the budget on the backs of low-income families, minorities, and children.

Please contact your members of Congress and ask them to oppose H.R. 4725.