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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Health Insurance for Children

“I saw an article about health insurance for children in Ohio. Can you find me any information?” The Newton Falls Public Library staff knows that this is important as they see more individuals losing employment and insurances.

There are different options for families to consider and the state’s website for Jobs and Family Services [] is an excellent place to begin. The state of Ohio has several different programs. Healthy Start (SCHIP) and Healthy Families are Medicaid programs. Healthy Start is available to pregnant woman and/or children younger than 19 in families with income up to 200% of the federal poverty level. Healthy Families is available to those having a child younger than 19 years of age, with income up to 90% of the Federal Poverty Level.

The Children's Buy-In Program is for children with serious illnesses whose families earn more than $42,000 a year and cannot find coverage or private insurance that is priced reasonably. Your child might be eligible for CBI if he/she is younger than age 19, a United States citizen and a resident of Ohio, in a family whose gross income is more than 300% of the FPL, has not had any insurance for at least 6 months before enrolling and is not eligible for Medicaid. Your child must also meet one of the following to qualify: unable to obtain creditable coverage due to a pre-existing condition, lost only available creditable coverage due to exhausting a lifetime benefit , only available coverage is more than twice the state premium for CBI, or participates in the program for medically handicapped children (ODH/BCMH).

The county health departments also offer preventive health services to families and children. Contact the Newton Falls Public Library staff for the information you need to reach your local county’s agency. Trumbull County’s immunization schedules for children and adults are available online at Family and Children’s First Council of Trumbull County [] has programs related to children’s health including Help Me Grow for pregnant women and children under 3 years and Second Step, a school based prevention program.

The library has resources available to assist parents in making wise health care decisions for their children. Some of the titles which may be borrowed are: Your Child's Health: the parents' one-stop reference guide to: symptoms, emergencies, common illnesses, behavior problems, healthy development by Barton D. Schmitt, Naturally Healthy Babies and Children: a commonsense guide to herbal remedies, nutrition, and health” by Aviva Romm, and “Childhood Diseases and Disorders Sourcebook: basic consumer health information about medical problems often encountered in pre-adolescent children, including respiratory tract ailments, ear infections, sore throats, disorders of the skin and scalp, digestive and genitourinary diseases, infectious diseases, inflammatory disorders, chronic physical and developmental disorders, allergies, and more: along with information about diagnostic tests, common childhood surgeries, and frequently used medications, with a glossary of important terms and resource directory.

By going online and accessing the Ohio Web Library [] with your library card, you can find additional information by selecting ‘Resources’ and then ‘Health and Medicine.’ The ‘Consumer Health Complete’ allows you to search a variety of medical and health resources. If you are looking for specific non-emergency information, choosing NetWellness permits you to ‘Ask an Expert.’

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