A new report from a coalition of military family and health advocacy groups highlights the crucial role Medicaid plays for millions of children in military families. The report details how 200,000 children in active service families rely on Medicaid to get the health care services they need, and 3.4 million children of veterans turn to the same program for health coverage. Medicaid plays a critical role for military families, helping them to stay focused on ensuring our nation's military readiness.
"While our armed forces provide excellent health care coverage to service members and their families at home and abroad, many military children still must rely on Medicaid," Mark Wietecha, president and CEO of the Children's Hospital Association—a founding member of the Tricare for Kids (TFK) Coalition—notes in the report.
"Approximately 3.4 million children of veterans who have served our country depend on Medicaid. An additional 200,000 children of active service and retiree families with TRICARE coverage also rely on Medicaid to supplement the care they receive through the military's health plan. Caring for children in military-connected families with serious conditions or illness supports active-service-member parents fulfilling their own oath to protect our country. Caring for children of veterans supports our national commitment to those who have served. Medicaid provides health care coverage for tens of millions of children across the country and a primary means of supporting their lives toward more capable and fulfilling adulthoods."
"If we don't prioritize and invest in our children's health and well-being, we jeopardize our future military readiness," Lieutenant General Dana T. Atkins, president and CEO, Military Officers Association of America— a member of the TFK Coalition—notes in the report. "Understanding how children—including children in military families—receive health care today and the challenges they encounter is an important first step to prioritizing their unique needs. Our children depend on us, and someday soon we will depend on them."