March 01, 2019

Kaine Cosponsors Bill To Improve Care For Kids With Complex Medical Conditions

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, joined a bipartisan group of colleagues to cosponsor the Advancing Care for Exceptional (ACE) Kids Act. The bill would allow health care providers to coordinate care, lower costs, and improve quality outcomes for children with complex medical conditions on Medicaid.      

“Families deserve support when accessing care for their loved ones,” said Kaine. “This bill will make it easier for kids with complex medical conditions to get the coordinated care they need."

The ACE Kids Act supports state-run Medicaid programs in establishing health homes, which integrate care from multiple providers to treat patients with complex medical needs. The legislation would also require the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to collect and publish best practices to help ensure children with complex medical conditions receive prompt care from out-of-state providers, leading to more health care options.     

About two-thirds of the three million children with complex medical conditions are covered by Medicaid, representing nearly 40 percent of Medicaid costs for children. These children have illnesses and conditions including cancer, congenital heart disease, cystic fibrosis, Down syndrome and chronic health challenges from premature birth, which often require them to travel to another state to find treatment. The burden of coordinating this complicated care often falls on the families of the children. On average, children with complex medical needs require five to six specialists with as many as 20-30 health and allied health professionals involved in their care. This bill would help these families of children navigate the complicated health care system.

Full text of the bill can be found here.