Ventura County Leaders Consider Private-Public Partnership To Insure Kids
The 35,000 uninsured children in Ventura County could have coverage within two years if a coalition of public and health care industry officials and the health industry that met on Wednesday in Camarillo agree to start a Children's Health Initiative program in the county, the Ventura County Star reports.
About 85% of Ventura County's uninsured children are eligible to enroll in either Medi-Cal or Healthy Families, Maricela Morales, associate executive director of the Central Coast Alliance for a Sustainable Economy, said. The remaining 15% could be insured through the CHI program, which currently operates in 17 California counties.
Most CHI funding -- about 70% -- would come from government sources, and the remainder would come from the private sector. Bob Brownstein, policy director at Working Partnerships USA, said that the program has had problems securing funding but has received some from the state and federal government, the Star reports.
Steve Bennett, chair of the Ventura County Board of Supervisors, said, "With such a broken and fragmented health care system that we have, we are all in this county going to be better off and safer if we can get health insurance for all children." He added that the CHI program in the county is not a guarantee (Barlow, Ventura County Star, 12/9).