December 20, 2008
Another casualty of Ike

Health insurance.

Stephanie Goodman, a spokeswoman for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, said more than half of the 72,000 children statewide who did not re-enroll in Medicaid are from the Houston and Beaumont areas -- both hit by Hurricane Ike.

"We expect to see some swings in enrollment, but this was bigger than normal," Goodman said. "Seeing a higher percentage from one area also raised warning signs that we need to stop and take a look at this."

Children will have coverage through the end of the year as agency workers call families to find out why they did not submit applications.

"In the aftermath of Hurricane Ike and a worsening economy, it is critical that safety net programs are operating as efficiently as possible so that struggling families can get the help that they need," said Barbara Best of the Houston-based Children's Defense Fund Texas office.


Goodman said many families did not return application renewal forms that were mailed to their homes. The agency is trying to determine if mail and other disruptions caused by the hurricane prevented families from completing paperwork.

Yeah, that may be a problem. I just want to know, how is it that we're only figuring this out now? Why wasn't someone paying attention from the beginning to Medicaid recipients in the affected areas so that something proactive, like getting them automatically re-enrolled for another six months, could have been done? I mean, I realize that question answers itself, but still. This did not have to happen.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 20, 2008 to Hurricane Katrina

The Republicans always look for opportunity to cut funding for the social programs they believe are threats to the American way of life, their American way of life anyway, and of course natural disasters usually provide the opportunity for the opportunity.

The excuse will be that even everyone lost their homes and were living in their cars, they should have still found a way to re-enroll their children. And if they're still living in their cars, well, they should call FEMA and complain. The Republicans are not really complaining about FEMA yet. They're waiting until Barack Obama takes office. Then they will start complaining. About the Democrats and about how the Democrats have turned their backs to all the victims of Hurricane Ike.

In one of his last acts as president, George W Bush will probably commit a couple of hundred billion to Louisiana for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. So the Republican governor can claim how the Republicans have responded to the needs of the people.

That's the way the Republicans work. Which is why nothing works for anyone in this country except for Republicans.

Posted by: baby snooks on December 20, 2008 1:45 PM

I'm glad you ran this. I missed it. These UTMB cuts and other related stuff is so lousy.

Posted by: Cincinnati Liberal on December 22, 2008 10:19 AM
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