Clark was joined by Rep. Herrera-Butler and Sens. Bennet, Brown, Grassley, and Portman in introducing the Accelerating Kids’ Access to Care Act 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Assistant Speaker Katherine Clark (D-MA-5) introduced the bipartisan, bicameral Accelerating Kids’ Access to Care Act to help families access life-saving care for children with complex medical conditions. The legislation aims to facilitate access to care while retaining program safeguards and reducing regulatory burdens on providers. Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA-3) joined Clark in introducing the legislation in the House of Representatives, and companion legislation was introduced in the Senate by Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and Rob Portman (R-OH).

“Kids with serious health conditions often can’t wait for care – and they shouldn’t have to. The Accelerating Kids’ Access to Care Act ensures that red tape and state lines don’t stand between children and life-saving medical care,” Clark said.

“Boston Children’s Hospital treats more children with rare diseases and complex conditions than any other hospital in the country, and our patients come from all 50 states,” said Dr. Kevin Churchwell, President & Chief Executive Officer of Boston Children’s Hospital. “We see first-hand the importance of timely care and the potential threats that delays in care pose to the health and well-being of many patients. This legislation is a crucial step toward ensuring that all patients receive the care they need, when they need it. On behalf of our patients and their families, we thank the bill’s sponsors and urge its enactment.”

Children with complex medical needs cannot always receive the highly specialized care they need within their home state. When that happens, parents must work with health care providers and state Medicaid officials to find out-of-state providers able to provide necessary medical care. The process is difficult and full of red tape, delaying children and their families from receiving the care they desperately need, and in some cases not receiving access to care at all.

The Accelerating Kids’ Access to Care Act would provide states with the ability to use a streamlined screening and enrollment process for out-of-state pediatric care providers that need to enroll in another state’s Medicaid program, at the same time safeguarding important program integrity processes. This would help reduce the red tape and regulatory burdens that slow down or, in certain cases, prohibit children from receiving the care they need.

Full text of the legislation can be found HERE.

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