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New York City
May 2001

Debunking Fears about Child Health Plus at CB7
by Sybil Maimin

The greatest number of uninsured children live between West 166th Street and Dyckman Street in Washington Heights. Yet free or low-cost health insurance, Child Health Plus, is available to legal residents ages 0 through 19 via a simple application form. Citizenship is not required.

Federal, state and some city funds that have been made available for the insurance go largely unused because of a dearth of applicants. David Harris, a child advocate and member of the Youth Committee of Community Board 7, and David Nieves of the Alianza Dominicana, a multi-service organization for youth and families, particularly of Dominican extraction, are determined to see this change through an outreach program to explain to uninformed, sometimes frightened or skeptical, mostly immigrant parents that the program can be trusted, will benefit their children and will not harm families.

Parentsí common fears are of deportation based on information given to authorities. Harris and Nieves explain that the program does not communicate with the Immigration and Naturalization Service and asks for very little information. In fact, a newly approved program to be launched shortly, Family Health Plus, will insure children of undocumented immigrants.

Child Health Plus is based on a sliding scale of income. A family of four with an income of less than $27,213 will receive the insurance free. The full premium is still much less than that of private insurance. Enlistees are provided with a list of local medical providers to choose from, and there are no co-pays or additional charges.

For information and applications, call David Harris at 212-580-5577 or David Nieves at 212-427-300l.

 

Education Update, Inc., P.O. Box 20005, New York, NY 10001. Tel: (212) 481-5519. Fax: (212) 481-3919. Email: ednews1@aol.com.
All material is copyrighted and may not be printed without express consent of the publisher. © 2001.




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