Budget Debate Centers on Healthy Kids Waiting Lists
A $23 million funding infusion for Healthy Kids programs included in the fiscal year 2006-2007 state budget proposal would allow 300 children in San Luis Obispo County to move off the waiting list and enroll in the county's Healthy Kids program, the San Luis Obispo Tribune reports.
If the state budget proposal currently under consideration is passed, San Luis Obispo County would receive $300,000 to eliminate its waiting list. According to Kena Burke, executive director of the county's Children's Health Initiative, it costs less to insure children and provide preventive care than it does to provide emergency care.
However, Republican legislators have said they will not support a budget that provides funds for health benefits for undocumented immigrant children.
The University of California-Los Angeles Center for Health Policy Research estimates that about 4,000 children in San Luis Obispo County are uninsured (Arnquist, San Luis Obispo Tribune, 6/22).