The state of Georgia has the 5th highest rate of uninsured children in the nation, according to a new report from Georgetown University Center for Children and Families.
Georgia’s rate of uninsured children was 8.1% in 2018, up from 6.7% in 2016.
The rate of uninsured children nationwide increased from 4.7 percent to 5.2 percent between 2016 and 2018, with more than 4 million kids now uninsured. Coverage losses were widespread, with Georgia as one of 15 states showing statistically significant increases in the number or rate of uninsured children.
“These data confirm what we already know: our state needs to break down barriers to coverage for children and families,” said Dr. Erica Fener Sitkoff, Executive Director for Voices for Georgia’s Children. “Many uninsured children are eligible for, but not enrolled in Medicaid. We are looking forward to working with the administration to overcome these barriers and get children the coverage they need.”
Voices held roundtable interviews in Whitfield, Effingham, Dougherty, and Lamar counties. Those interviews informed our Barriers to Healthcare for Georgia’s Children report, which details the ten most commonly mentioned barriers to healthcare access. The report also includes recommendations on how to remove barriers to healthcare coverage, including keeping the Gateway online enrollment portal open 24/7, allowing enrollment in one program (such as SNAP) to satisfy requirements in enrolling in Medicaid, and ensuring caregivers can obtain health coverage.
CHILD ADVOCACY AND POLICY FELLOWSHIP
As an extension of our work surrounding the Barriers Report, Voices is proud to announce that we have officially kicked off our very first cohort of the Child Advocacy and Policy Fellowship! The Fellowship continues the feedback loop between Voices and communities in the state and strengthens community champions’ ability to advocate for child well-being at multiple levels of government. Our four Fellows come from the communities where we held the roundtable discussions (Dougherty, Chatham (Effingham adjacent), Lamar and Whitfield counties). The content of the fellowship is built around the “Whole Child” concept, in an effort to ensure Fellows acquire a foundational understanding in the following areas:
- Policy, Whole Child Policy, and Equity
- Physical Health and Quality Care
- Mental Health
- Protection, Safety, and Juvenile Justice
- Afterschool, Summer Learning & Early Childhood Development
WHEN ALL CHILDREN THRIVE, WE ALL BENEFIT.
JOIN THE MOVEMENT AS A VOICE FOR GEORGIA’S CHILDREN.