TN Healthcare Advocates Call for Passage of Build Back Better Plan

Plan Includes Funding for Key Health Policy Initiatives

Andy Spears

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Tennessee groups focused on healthcare outcomes are calling on the state’s congressional delegation to support President Biden’s Build Back Better plan, which includes funding for a number of health initiatives.

The Tennessee Justice Center (TJC)has emailed supporters urging support for Build Back Better. TJC notes:

The Build Back Better Act includes relatively low-cost, proven policies that will greatly improve maternal and child health, including continuous coverage for children with Medicaid and CHIP health insurance, requiring states to extend postpartum coverage to 12 months following pregnancy, and permanently funding CHIP. As Congress keeps debating on the reconciliation package this week, they must keep these provisions intact — our kids and families are counting on it.

Additionally, TJC notes:

45,000 children and pregnant women in Tennessee have CHIP as there primary health insurance. They would all lose coverage if their was a lapse in CHIP funding. To ensure they stay covered, Congress must permanently fund CHIP.

Moral Imperative

Pastors affiliated with the Southern Christian Coalition say the plan helps meet a moral imperative to care for others.

“We are imploring the Tennessee congressional delegation to support this budget that reflects Christian values,” said Rev. Dr. Kevin Riggs, Pastor of Franklin Community Church. “One core Christian value is the belief that every human is made in God’s image and deserves to live a safe and healthy life. We believe in equity and justice for all. And by improving public health, protecting God’s creation, and prioritizing those who are economically disadvantaged, this plan helps create an equitable economy that improves the lives and well being of everyone. No matter where a person lives or the color of their skin, all Tennessee children deserve a high quality education that helps them make a strong future for themselves and their future families.”

“As a nation, we spend far less on our children than any other developed country,” said Rev. Laura Becker, Pastor of Northminister Presbyterian Church in Chattanooga. “That is why it is so important and why it is a moral imperative that our Representatives and Senators vote in support of the Build Back Better Act so that we can make the gap smaller, and support children across the country the same way that they are supported in other developed nations. As the richest nation in the world, we should not have such inequity and child poverty right here at home and there is plenty of it in our own state.”

Photo by Adhy Savala on Unsplash

For more on Tennessee politics and policy, follow Andy Spears

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Andy Spears

Writer and policy advocate living in Nashville, TN —Public Policy Ph.D. — writes on education policy, consumer affairs, and more . . .