A Healthy Blog

Massachusetts health care — wonky, with a healthy dose of reality

Children's Health

What do other 33 states have for children that Massachusetts does not?

Justin is a six year old boy with asthma. He stays healthy and out of the hospital as long as he takes his medications. One morning, Justin’s mom called the Health Care For All's HelpLine in a panic. She went to refill her son’s prescriptions and was told she would have to pay out-of-pocket because her son’s MassHealth coverage was shut off. The medications would cost hundreds of dollars that she did not have. The HCFA HelpLine helped her to reinstate her coverage that was terminated due to a small fluctuation in her income. But it was too late; in the interim Justin had an asthma attack and... Read more »

Children’s Mental Health in Danger: Scott Brown Could Save The Day

In signing the FY 2011 State Budget last week, Governor Patrick made reductions to a number of line items, including three that directly impact children living with mental health needs: · Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services were reduced by $400,000; · Early Education Mental Health Consultations were reduced by $250,000; and · The Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative took more than a $1 million cut. Read more »

Prison Is Not Treatment: Part 2

Back in August, we wrote a blog about young people with mental health needs ending up in prison for lack of community resources.http://blog.hcfama.org/?p=3386 Read more »

Prison Is Not Treatment: Part 2

Back in August, we wrote a blog about young people with mental health needs ending up in prison for lack of community resources.http://blog.hcfama.org/?p=3386 Read more »

Prison Is Not Treatment: Part 2

Back in August, we wrote a blog about young people with mental health needs ending up in prison for lack of community resources.http://blog.hcfama.org/?p=3386 Read more »

National Health Reform is Good For Massachusetts: Kids

Massachusetts has been a national leader in expanding affordable coverage to children. Chapter 58 expanded MassHealth coverage to kids in families with income up to 3 times the poverty level, and the Children's Medical Security Plan provides basic care to all children ineligible for other coverage at any income level. Our aggressive outreach programs have reduced the uninsurance rate for kids to below 2%, the best in the country, though there is still more work to be done. Despite all that we have accomplished, national health reform would be good for children in Massachusetts, assuring... Read more »

Early Intervention "Stroller-In" – It’s All About Hope

Over 200 parents and young children “strollered in” to the State House today to lobby against the cuts that Governor Patrick has asked for regarding Early Intervention Programs. Early Intervention needs an estimated $2 million by April 1st to maintain the services that are currently provided. Otherwise, the percentage delay that a child must exhibit to get services will rise significantly. For children with speech delays, the news is even worse. They will have to exhibit a 50% delay versus the current 30% they currently need to exhibit to get services. This means that for a two year old... Read more »

Suicide, Kids, and Mental Health

For the past two years, the Children’s Mental Health Campaign has held 19 forums on mental health needs of kids across the Commonwealth.  While each forum has been different, one statistic universally resonates with all audiences and brings home the importance of the issue: Suicide is the third leading cause of death among children between the ages of 10 – 24; of those who commit suicide, 90% (90%!) have a diagnosable and treatable mental illness at the time of their death. Read more »

Health Care Financing Committee to hold December 3 Public Hearing

Thursday, the legislature’s Joint Committee on Health Care Financing will hear two key bills affecting young people: S.39 / H.188 – An Act to Assure Continuity of Health Coverage For Children, and S. 609 - An Act Relative to the Qualifying Student Health Insurance Program. The hearing will be at 11:30 am in State House Room A-1, on Thursday, December 3 . Read more »

Children Are Not Little Adults

On Friday, Dr. James Mandell, CEO of Children’s Hospital Boston, presented “Children are not Little Adults: A Pediatric View on Payment and Insurance Reform” at the Health Law and Policy Forum Brown Bag Lunch Series. Read more »

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