Senate Passes Portman-Bennet Amendment to Help Kids with Complex Medical Conditions

Washington, DC - Today, the Senate adopted an amendment introduced by Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Rob Portman (R-OH) to improve care for children with medically-complex conditions in Medicaid. The amendment to the Senate's budget resolution complements the bipartisan bill the senators introduced in January with Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Roy Blunt (R-MO), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). The amendment was approved 96-0.

"Kids with these conditions and their families already face a number of lifelong challenges that are expensive and disruptive. They often have to keep up with a number of treatments and regiments. They coordinate care with multiple doctors, providers, and specialists. Many times they travel across state lines for procedures that are not performed in their home state. That complicates the Medicaid bill process and adds extra burdens and stress to the entire process," Bennet said. "Our amendment cuts bureaucratic red tape in the Medicaid program for families and gives kids access to the seamless care they need."

The corresponding Advancing Care for Exceptional (ACE) Kids Act would allow health care providers to deliver health care services to kids with medically-complex conditions through models that coordinate care between providers, improve quality outcomes, and lower costs. It also allows the Medicaid system to realize savings while improving health outcomes for the most vulnerable of our nation's children.

The proposal is estimated to deliver up to $13 billion in total savings to Medicaid through increased efficiencies, including reducing hospitalizations and emergency room visits, while providing a variety of outpatient and community services and support needed by these children.

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