Santa Clara County Healthy Kids Program a Model for Similar Programs Statewide, Mercury News Says
The Santa Clara County Healthy Kids program, which announced last week that enrollment had increased to more than 10,000, began in January 2001 as an "unrealistic dream" to provide universal health coverage for county children but has become the "flagship for similar efforts" statewide, according to a San Jose Mercury News editorial. Alameda County, San Mateo County, San Francisco and Los Angeles have moved to implement similar programs, which also help to enroll low- and middle-income children in Medi-Cal and Healthy Families, the editorial states. The editorial adds that Healthy Kids serves as a "monument to coalition-building," as health care advocacy groups and providers convinced government officials to fund the program with part of the county's share of the tobacco settlement and cigarette tax revenue. Today, Healthy Kids "wisely is lining up other reliable [funding] sources" to support future operations. The editorial concludes that Healthy Kids "can take pride in leading the way toward the day when every California child has access to affordable health care" (San Jose Mercury News, 8/13).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.