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Congressman Bobby Scott

Representing the 3rd District of Virginia

Under President Bush, The Number of Uninsured Has Risen by 6 Million - to 46 Million Americans

May 1, 2006
Press Release
(Washington D.C.)- Today, Rep. Scott called on the Republican-controlled Congress during this week to bring up for immediate consideration two key bills that would cover more than half of America’s uninsured.

"This week is ‘Cover the Uninsured Week,’ and the problem of millions of Americans who work but have no health insurance continues to grow," stated Rep. Scott. "During President Bush’s tenure, the number of uninsured has increased by 6 million nationwide. Here in Virginia, the number of uninsured has increased by 287,000 resulting in a total of now 1,061,00 people in Virginia going without health insurance.

"Unfortunately, over the last five years, President Bush and the Republican Congress have done nothing to bring down the number of uninsured," Rep. Scott pointed out. "Furthermore, Republican proposals that have been put forward would do more harm than good -- undermining employer-provided insurance and resulting in net increases in the number of uninsured."

"It is important that we now move forward to expand access to affordable, quality and reliable health coverage for America’s families," said Rep. Scott.

 

"The two bills I am co-sponsoring are targeted to build on programs that already work and ensure that two fast-growing segments of the uninsured have access to affordable health coverage: low-income working parents and people ages 55 to 65," added Rep. Scott.

Rep. Scott noted that he is cosponsoring two bills that target each important group. The Family Care Act (H.R. 2071) would lower costs and expand affordable coverage for working parents, by making the parents of children eligible for the State Children’s Health Insurance Program and Medicaid also eligible for coverage. These working parents frequently work at jobs that do not provide access to employer-based insurance. And the Medicare Early Access Act (H.R. 2072) would allow people between the ages 55 and 64 to purchase Medicare coverage with a subsidized premium. Currently, there are 3.5 million uninsured people age 55 and over who are not yet eligible for Medicare. Together, these bills would cover over 23 million uninsured Americans.

"Millions of working, uninsured Americans go to bed every night worrying what will happen to them and their families if a major illness or injury strikes," stated Rep. Scott. "This is a national scandal. I am fighting this year to try to ensure that Congress moves forward on this legislation so that quality health coverage becomes available to millions more Americans. It should be our highest priority."

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