NOVEMBER 28, 1997 ..................................................................... NUMBER 70
We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We have devoted the second page to the State Child Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Congress is in recess due to the holidays but Congressional Committees will be meeting. It is a very thankful time...Best Wishes To You And Your Family!!!
The NPND Legislative sub-committee's first telephone conference call is set for December 3, 1997 at 1:00 PM EST. We will review Section 601 through Section 613 of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the corresponding regulation from the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM). A chart of these can be found on the NPND Web page. You can also contact Heather Hebdon at (253) 565-2266, fax (253) 566- 8052, or by E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for a copy of the chart. Everyone is invited!
Want to join in? Make a reservation so we will have enough lines for everyone to participate. Please send " I WANT TO PARTICIPATE IN THE DECEMBER 3rd IDEA/NPRM TELEPHONE CONFERENCE CALL" with your NAME, ORGANIZATION, PHONE, FAX OR E-MAIL to Patty Smith, Executive Director, NPND (see address and phone numbers below) or E-mail at email@example.com. The phone number for the conference call is (904) 779-4774. This "904" call-in is a 50% split cost to the caller and NPND.
NCIL SPONSORS TELECONFERENCE
The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) is sponsoring a teleconference on the IDEA proposed regulations titled, "Being In The Schoolhouse Is Not Enough" on December 17th from 3 to 5 PM EST. Featured presenters are Thomas Hehir, Director, Office of Special Education Programs, US Department of Education and Kathleen Boundy, Co-Director, Center for Law and Education. Find out what's going on with the IDEA Regulations; learn how to get involved in the regulatory process; hear about key changes that stress quality education for students with disabilities; and get the early scoop on NCIL's draft comments on the proposed regulations. The conference call is toll-free. REGISTER BY THE 5TH OF DECEMBER. To register and get further information on the teleconference call, contact Raymond Linn at (703) 525-3406, (757) 525-4153 (TDD) or E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
COPAA HOLDS FIRST MEETING
The EDLAW Center, a nonprofit organization established to provide technical assistance to attorneys representing parents of children with disabilities, announces the first Annual Conference and organization meeting of COPAA: Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, to be held at the Clarion Plaza Hotel in Orlando, Florida on January 23-25, 1998. The purpose of this conference is to create a systemic method to increase the quantity and quality of legal resources available to parents of children with disabilities. The organizers of the conference have an illustrative group of presenters and have tracts not only for attorneys and advocates but also parents. The registration fee is $275 and is due by December 15th. Check the EDLAW Center's Web page for details on the conference and the special rates on hotel and airline reservations at http:// www.edlaw.net. You may also call (954) 966-4489 or fax (954) 966-8561 for information on the conference.
The National Institute for Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) announced this Monday that researchers have found two receptors, carbon dioxide sensitivity and blood pressure responses, in the control of breathing that have been found to be abnormal in the brainstem of some infants who have died of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). SIDS accounts for 2000-3000 deaths each year and is leading cause of death for children 1 to 12 months of age. This important study confirms earlier work that the brain region, arcuate neuleus, may be a strong factor in SIDS. One of the goals of the research is to eventually develop a screening test to identify infants at risk. NICHD joined the American Academy of Pediatrics in initiating the "Back to Sleep" campaign recommending placing health infants on their backs or sides to reduce the risk of SIDS. Since the campaign, SIDS death rate has dropped 38 percent and only 21 percent of babies are stomach sleepers. Call (800) 505-CRIB or visit the NICHD Web page at http://www.nih.gov/nichd for the latest campaign materials.
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The following list provides the results of a Children's Defense Fund's survey of states' actions to implement State Child Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP). The chart gives details including the number of uninsured children in each of the states surveyed. The initial survey was done on October 10th and this is an update, completed November 24th, 1997. The information was provided by state officials, advocates, and press reports. Do you know what is happening in your state? Get involved!
* Low-Income Children
|STATE||NO. OF UNINSURED CHILDREN||STATUS|
|ALABAMA||(188,000)||Plan submitted to HCFA proposing Medicaid expansion for children ages 14 through 19 with family incomes under 100 percent of poverty. Proposed effective date is 2/1/98.|
|ALASKA||(9,000*)||Governor proposes Medicaid expansion. Proposal will be submitted to state legislature at legislative session beginning mid-January|
|ARIZONA||(184,000*)||Governor to select a commission in November to review state options.|
|ARKANSAS||(138,000)||Grant money potentially available to fund Medicaid waiver previously approved covering children up to 200% of the federal poverty level .|
|CALIFORNIA||(1,785,000)||Legislation adopted 10/2 to expand Medicaid for poor teenagers and create a non-Medicaid program for children up to 200 percent of poverty. Program will be implemented 7/1/98.|
|CONNECTICUT||(85,000)||Legislation adopted 10/30 to expand Medicaid to 185 percent of poverty through age 18, and create a new program to 300 percent of poverty. Scheduled to begin 4/1/98.|
|COLORADO||(131,000)||Plan submitted to HCFA on 10/13 to create a new program to insure children under 185 percent of poverty, beginning 1/1/98|
|DELAWARE||(13,000*)||State Health Care Commission to submit proposal to the legislature in January.|
|FLORIDA||(645,000)||Governor to propose plan soon. Children's health insurance not included in November's special legislative session|
|GEORGIA||(338,000)||State considering public-private option similar to Florida's Healthy Kids Program.|
|IDAHO||(52,000)||Initial Medicaid expansion planned for 10/97. Committee to discuss long-term options starting 1/98.|
|ILLINOIS||(349,000)||No proposals from Governor or legislature. Regular vote session scheduled for 11/97.|
|INDIANA||(31,000*)||Governor appointed panel to examine state options and seek public input.|
|KANSAS||(81,000)||Panel to present proposal to legislature 1/98.|
|KENTUCKY||(93,000*)||Governor has appointed task force.|
|LOUISIANA||(278,000)||Legislative task force holding public meetings to discuss options. Legislators have suggested reaching out to Medicaid-eligible children before accepting federal grant funds for children's health insurance.|
|MARYLAND||(100,000*)||Four hearings held throughout the state. Governor's Roundtable planned for 11/18/97. Medicaid expansion to 200 percent of poverty through age 18 under consideration.|
|MASSACHUSETTS||(139,000)||Medicaid expansion proposed to cover children up to age 19 up to 200 percent of poverty. Implementation date has not yet been set.|
|MICHIGAN||(231,000)||Governor proposed new program to cover children under 200 percent of poverty. Implementation in five counties beginning 1/1/98. State-wide implementation by spring '98.|
|MISSOURI||(172,000)||Medicaid waiver would cover children up to age 18 up to 300 percent of poverty. Implementation by 7/1/98. Plan submitted to HCFA.|
|MONTANA||(30,000)||Public hearings being held in November and December to gather input.|
|NEBRASKA||(30,000*)||Governor to propose Medicaid expansion, possibly to 200 percent of poverty for children through age 18. Legislative hearing held in late October, in which Governor's staff and advocates indicated support for expansion.|
|NEVADA||(84,000)||Governor working with state health agency to plan non-Medicaid program to begin spring '98. Final plan to be developed by 1/98. Public forum to be held on 11/21/97.|
|NEW JERSEY||(244,000)||Governor proposed a Medicaid expansion for children up to age 18 up to 133 percent of poverty, and a new state program up to 200 percent of poverty. To begin 1/1/98.|
|NEW MEXICO||(137,000)||Medicaid expansion to 235 percent of poverty proposed by Administration. Possible implementation by 3/1/98.|
|NEW YORK||(621,000)||Plan submitted to HCFA which would expand enrollment and increase premium subsidies in the state's current child health insurance program.|
|NORTH CAROLINA||(264,000)||Task force to submit report to state's Secretary of Human Resources on 11/17/97. Secretary to work with legislative task force to submit a plan to the Governor. May be included in special legislative session in February.|
|OHIO||(297,000)||Medicaid expansion announced for children through age 18 up to 150 percent of poverty starting 1/1/98.|
|OKLAHOMA||(219,000)||Future Medicaid expansion planned with sliding-scale premium payments up to 250 percent of poverty.|
|OREGON||(67,000*)||Public hearing held in October. State would like to use federal grant funds in its recently passed family health insurance assistance program, which offers insurance vouchers for families between 100 and 170 percent of poverty.|
|PENNSYLVANIA||(316,000)||Plan submitted to HCFA that expands the state's current child health insurance program. State has covered children formerly on the program's waiting list in anticipation of federal grant funds.|
|RHODE ISLAND||(28,000)||Department of Human Services to seek public input and propose plan by 12/31/97.|
|SOUTH CAROLINA||(153,000)||Governor expanded Medicaid on 10/1/97 for children up to age 19 with family incomes under 150 percent of poverty.|
|TENNESSEE||(178,000)||Governor has appointed a task force.|
|TEXAS||(1,392,000)||Group of publicly funded hospitals on 10/28/97 volunteered to donate the state's matching funds in order to draw down federal grant funds. Legislators have expressed concerns over the offer.|
|UTAH||(74,000)||Governor plans non-Medicaid program for children through age 18, up to 200 percent of poverty. Program begins 4/1/98.|
|VIRGINIA||(209,000)||Legislative committee to formulate plan by 12/1/97, to be presented to legislature in January.|
|WEST VIRGINIA||(64,000)||Legislature may wait until January legislative session to decide whether or not to accept federal grant funds. Many legislators want to enroll eligible children into Medicaid before drawing down federal grant funds.|
|WISCONSIN||(95,000)||Medicaid waiver for families up to 185 percent of poverty proposed by legislature and Governor.|
MORE SCHIP UPDATE
On Wednesday, October 29th, Deborah Chang of the Health Care Financing Administration, Co-chair HHS' task force to implement CHIP, announced that states have the flexibility under the new program to reach more children than many had anticipated in their SCHIP. Generally, the CHIP statue provides new federal funds only for children with incomes at or below 200% of the federal poverty level or $26,600 a year for a family of three. Ms. Chang stated, states have the same flexibility to determine family income under the new federal program they have under Medicaid as the CHIP statue is silent on how states calculate family income. In some cases they do not need a waiver from HCFA to cover children with gross family incomes above 200%. Exception to the 200% poverty cap works depending on the state's extended Medicaid coverage to children above 150% of the poverty level, the CHIP statute states children of that age may benefit from funding under the CHIP statue if their family income is less than 50 percentage points above the extended Medicaid coverage on June 1, 1997 - so if children under age 6 up to 185% of the poverty were covered, then funds can be used for coverage for children under age 6 up to 235% of the poverty level under SCHIP.
Also under Section 1902(r) of the Social Security Act, states may determine children's Medicaid eligibility using more liberal methodologies for evaluating income and assets than were used for AFDC. CA, DE, KS, ME, MI, MN, NH, NM, NC, ND, WA, WI, and VT are states that have used 1902(r) in disregarding a substantial amount of a family's income in determining children's eligibility and thus expanding Medicaid coverage. The same approach apparently can now be taken under the new CHIP statute, whether or not a state expands Medicaid or creates or expands a separate state program in developing their SCHIP. Contact your Governor's office to find out who is coordinating the development of SCHIP in your state and inquire about public input.
COMBINED FEDERAL CAMPAIGN (CFC )
The Combined Federal Campaign is half way through for this year. Friday Fax is one of the programs of NPND supported in part by CFC funding. If you would like to consider the National Parent Network on Disabilities, our number is 1532. THANKS FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION!