“Thank you, and good morning. I’m Dr. Edward Langston, Board Chair of the American Medical Association and a family physician in Lafayette, Indiana. I’m pleased to be here today to represent the nation’s largest physician organization as part of this diverse group of voices supporting children’s health care.
“I am here today to urge Congress and President Bush to take immediate action to preserve health care coverage for kids in low-income families. If the president does not sign a bill into law before the program expires on September 30, seven million children will be in danger of losing their CHIP coverage and risk joining the nine million kids who are already living without health insurance.
“Already, some states can no longer accept new children into this federal-state program because they don’t know if the funding is going to be there next month to support new enrollment. Let’s not make America’s children wait any longer for the health care they need.
“Right now, we have an important opportunity to make improvements to CHIP. We shouldn’t waste it. For children to get a good start in life, they need access to the medical care that this program makes possible. As a physician, I see the benefits of CHIP firsthand. Parents who work hard, but can’t afford health insurance, are able to get their kids the care they need to stay healthy and strong.
“America’s low-income children are relying on Congress and President Bush to ensure their continued access to health care. Covering kids is an investment in America’s future, as it enables future generations to have the best chance to learn, develop, and succeed. Today, we urge our elected leaders to do the right thing to protect America’s future.”
Statement attributable to:
Edward Langston, MD
AMA Board Chair