January 15, 2016
The House Health Innovation Subcommittee on Wednesday unanimously approved (
) HB 89 (Diaz, J.) that would eliminate a five-year waiting period before qualified children of legal immigrants are eligible for the KidCare health-insurance program. The vote came a day after House Speaker Steve Crisafulli during his opening session remarks called for passage of the bill. Removing the waiting period would allow more than 17,000 children to qualify for coverage immediately. The proposal, which promotes healthier children and families in Florida, has been a perennial priority of the FCCB. Michael McQuone, FCCB associate director for health, said in testimony before the committee, "providing legally-residing immigrant children with the opportunity to receive health benefits from their earliest years will have lifelong benefits to their overall growth and development."