Child Maltreatment 2020 Show Decreases

On January 21, 2022, the Children’s Bureau released the annual child abuse and neglect report: Child Maltreatment 2020. This year’s report based on data and reports in the first year of the pandemic, shows an overall decrease in abuse and neglect reports and fatalities, but the numbers also highlight some troubling trends or questions: A

Child Tax Credit (CTC) IRS Website Goes Live

On Monday, January 24, 2022, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) updated their live sight designed to help families get the remaining part of their 2021 CTC. There are two important live tabs: the Get Your Child Tax Credit and Check Your Eligibility. The CTC has been federal law since the mid-1990s, but last year’s expansion

Three Congressional Committee Focusing on Mental Health/Substance Use

Two Senate Committees and one House Committee are focusing on the challenges of access to mental health and substance use services in the next few weeks.  The Senate HELP Committee, the Senate Finance Committee and the full House Ways and Means Committee are all focused on the subject and what can be done. The HELP

Physicians Confirm Difficulty in Finding Child Behavior Health Services

A newly published survey and research paper, Difficulty Obtaining Behavioral Health Services for Children: A National Survey of Multiphysician Practices, conducted before the pandemic indicates that 85 percent of group practices for children and youth have had difficulty in finding evidence-based psychotherapy; family-based treatment and medication advice from a child psychiatrist or psychiatric nurse practitioner.

Final ACA Numbers In

On Thursday, January 27, 2022, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the final numbers for the ACA sign-up for the coming year with a final record total of 14.5 million people have signing up.  Open enrollment for the federal marketplace ran from November 1, 2021, through January 15, 2022.  CMS indicated that

CMS Taking Application on $49 Million to Reduce Uninsured Rate Among Children

On Thursday January 27, 2022, CMS announced the availability of $49 million to fund organizations that can connect more eligible children, parents, and pregnant individuals to health care coverage through Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Awardees—including state/local governments, tribal organizations, federal health safety net organizations, non-profits, schools, and others—will receive up to $1.5

Why Families Need to File Tax Returns for the 2021 CTC

The CTC has been federal law since the mid-1990s, but last year’s expansion added several improvements that lifted approximately half of children out of poverty.  It did that by making the tax “refundable’ meaning families could benefit even if they did not have enough “earned-income.’  It also added an innovation to make it more immediate:

Children’s Bureau: National Call to Action on Racial Equity

Save the date for February 3, 2022, 2:00 PM EST, for a live event by the Children’s Bureau when they release an information memorandum (IM) “Equity in Action.” The IM covers: The impact of racism on poverty and the well-being of children and families. The need for comprehensive action to address structural racism within policies

President Opens Door to Revamped BBB

Marking the first year of his term in office, President Biden held a nearly two-hour press conference on Wednesday, January 19, 2022, that touched on everything including the possibility of a revamped Build Back Better reconciliation bill. Since last December when Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) pulled his support for the $1.7 trillion package, talks have

Appropriation Update

Discussions continued between key appropriations leaders, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Congresswoman Kay Granger (R-TX).  Not much has been revealed but Chairperson DeLauro offered some broad positive comments about progress.  Like the reconciliation, Democratic leaders including the White House would like a final deal by March 1.

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