Today, President George Bush vetoed the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) legislation (H.R. 976).
SCHIP covers approximately 6 million low income children whose families earn too much to qualify for Medicaid and those who are either not offered or cannot afford private coverage. The House and Senate last week passed legislation to reauthorize SCHIP and boost funding for the program by $35 billion over five years.
This bill would for the first time establish parity for mental health benefits in SCHIP plans. It would also provide a six-month moratorium on the Administration's effort to restrict Medicaid rehabilitative services and school-based services, as outlined in the President's fiscal year 2008 budget proposal and proposed regulations released by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.
The House passed the SCHIP bill by a 265-159 margin. This vote margin is not large enough to override the President's veto. The Senate passed the measure by a 67-29 margin.
It is extremely urgent that you contact your Representative and urge them to support this important legislation during the veto override vote expected to take place next week.
Below is a list of target offices.
Republicans Who Voted Against SCHIP
Republicans Who Didn't Vote
Democrats Who Voted Against SCHIP
Please call your Representative by Monday October 8th!!!
Call 1-202-224-3121 to reach the Capitol Switchboard, and ask for your Representative's office. When connected to the office, ask for the Health Legislative Assistant. If you leave a voicemail message, include your name and phone number. If you don't know who your Representative is, go to www.house.gov and enter your zip code.
If your Representative voted in support of the bill, please call and thank them for their support. If your Representative did not vote in support of the bill, please see the suggested message below.
"I am a child and adolescent psychiatrist from __________ (your hometown) and I am calling to ask that Representative___________vote in favor of SCHIP legislation in the upcoming veto override vote. This legislation is vital to the health and well being of America's uninsured children. The legislation authorizes additional funding of $35 billion over five years, which the CBO estimates would cover 4.1 million children who otherwise would go uninsured. I appreciate his/her support for all children in America. If I can be of any further help, please let me know."
Please contact the AACAP Dept. of Government Affairs at 800.333.7636, x. 126, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. Please let us know when you have contacted your Representative. Thank you for your action!