PNS Daily Newscast - February 28 2020 

Coronavirus updates from coast to coast; and safety-net programs face deep cuts by Trump administration.

2020Talks - February 28, 2020 

Tomorrow are the South Carolina primaries, and former VP Joe Biden leads in the poll, followed by winner of the first three contests, Sen. Bernie Sanders and businessman Tom Steyer. Some Republican South Carolinians may vote for Sanders because they want closed primaries.

WA Urges Parents: Get On the Health Care Bus

July 31, 2008

Seattle, WA – The State of Washington is going on the road to make it easier for people to sign their kids up for health insurance. Today, a 15-city bus tour kicks off in Seattle to encourage more participation in "Apple Health for Kids." That's the new name for the state-run health insurance plan for families, which consolidates a number of programs under a single, comprehensive plan.

Jon Gould, deputy director of the Children's Alliance, says parents can visit the bus with proof of income and identifying information about their children, to sign them up.

"Health coverage is free for children in very low-income families. For children in slightly higher-income families, the family pays a per-child, per-month premium, and a typical premium is about $30 per family, per month."

The state estimates about 70,000 kids are uninsured in Washington, possibly because their parents don't know that state-funded insurance is available. Gould says, while Congress is still debating whether to extend the federally-funded State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-CHIP), the Evergreen State is moving forward with its promise to "cover all kids" by the year 2010.

"We have research that shows children with health coverage do better in school, have better health outcomes and, eventually, rely less on future medical services, future social services, provided by the state."

Current income limits for the "Apple Health" plan are $44,000 a year for a family of three and $52,000 for a family of four, and Gould says the coverage includes dental and vision insurance. Bus tour stops for the next two weeks include Bellingham (Aug. 2); the Tri-Cities area (Aug. 12-13); Yakima (Aug. 14); Sunnyside (Aug. 15) and Spokane (Aug. 16).

Chris Thomas, Public News Service - WA