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Programs We Support

Children's Health Initiative

Recognizing that children without health insurance tend to do poorly in school, over-utilize emergency services, and fall seriously ill with initially minor conditions, Santa Clara County’s Board of Supervisors, with the help of a vast array of community organizations, created an initiative – the Children’s Health Initiative (CHI) – in 2000. The goal of CHI was, and continues to be, to provide access to comprehensive medical, dental, and vision care to all eligible children in the county whose family income is 300 percent or less of the federal poverty level (i.e., $67,068 for a family of four living in Santa Clara County).

At the inception of CHI, nearly two-thirds of the children in Santa Clara County who lacked insurance qualified for exiting government-funded programs. However, an estimated 18,000 children in the county were not eligible for existing programs. In response, CHI became the strategic outreach and enrollment effort to identify and assist the parents of these uninsured children in applying for appropriate health coverage through Medi-Cal and Healthy Families. Through this aggressive outreach effort, it became clear that another coverage option was in need for those children who did not qualify for the two subsidized health coverage options. CHI created the Healthy Kids program and began enrolling children in January 2001. The first program of its kind in the nation, Healthy Kids has been replicated in over 29 counties throughout California and serves as a critical mechanism for counties to work towards providing health coverage to all the children residing in their communities. Before CHI and the Healthy Kids program, one in eight children or 13% in Santa Clara County were uninsured. Now, this number has been reduced to one in 33 or 3%.

Healthy Kids Program

Healthy Kids enables low-income children in Santa Clara County to receive health services they need for healthy development. Funded entirely through local public and private sources, the program provides comprehensive medical, dental, vision, and mental health coverage to a population generally underserved -- specifically, children with immigration issues or those who are not eligible for state-subsidized Medi-Cal or Healthy Families because their family income is slightly too high to qualify, yet too low to pay for health care coverage. The cost of providing Healthy Kids coverage is $86 per child per month or an annual amount of $1,032 per child. In Santa Clara County, there are roughly 7,500 children currently enrolled in Healthy Kids.

With the current economic situation, the need becomes more critical. More and more families are losing their jobs and health coverage for themselves and their children. Without health coverage, paying out-of-pocket medical costs is simply not an option for many low-income families. Children are not able to obtain their annual checkups, see the doctor when they are sick, and obtain medications when they need them. As a result, families are forced to take their children (when they are very sick) to the emergency room and wait for hours to access care.

Healthy Kids enables uninsured children to obtain health coverage and access care. Recent studies funded by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and conducted by Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. indicate that Healthy Kids keeps children healthier. After studying children enrolled in Healthy Kids over four years, the use of preventative care increased by 11%, repeated sick visits decreased by 50%, unmet needs for medical and dental care were reduced, and parental worry was also dramatically reduced. In comparison to uninsured children in our community, children with Healthy Kids coverage miss less school days due to illness, access preventative services, and experience better overall health.

For more information, please visit Santa Clara Family Health Plan.

Healthy Workers

In 2009, the Santa Clara Valley Health and Hospital System (SCVHHS), Santa Clara Family Health Plan (SCFHP), and Working Partnerships USA (WPUSA) implemented a program that works to achieve three critical goals: decrease the number of uninsured adults, provide an affordable and comprehensive health plan for small businesses, and strengthen the region’s health care delivery system. The program, Healthy Workers, is a voluntary, employer-based program that provides comprehensive benefits at an affordable premium for low- and middle-income uninsured adults working in small businesses.

For more information, please visit Santa Clara Family Health Plan.