Top 5 Reasons Health Insurance Matters for Infants and Toddlers and Their Families

By Anitha Mohan

Health care is crucial to infants and toddlers’ physical, cognitive, and emotional development. For low-income families, affordable health insurance provides young children and their parents with important services that would otherwise be too expensive, such as routine check-ups, prescription drugs, medical procedures, and specialized care.

Here are five reasons why infants and toddlers, as well as their families, need access to affordable health insurance: 

  1. Health insurance for pregnant women and very young infants leads to healthier babies. During the first months of life, access to health insurance leads to significantly better health outcomes. This includes lower infant mortality rates and fewer instances of low birth weight. Routine screenings and check-ups can also help families identify and treat serious health issues before they worsen.
  2. Health insurance prevents and provides treatment for illness and injury. Children with insurance are more healthy because they receive treatment for illness and injury as well as crucial preventive care that preempts serious conditions.
  3. Health coverage for low-income infants and toddlers has lifelong benefits. Children with insurance experience higher educational attainment and other positive long-term outcomes. Health coverage strongly promotes high school and college completion, leading to employment and economic success.
  4. Children thrive when their parents and caregivers have access to health care. When child care providers are emotionally and physically healthy, they’re able to create warm, nurturing environments that promote children’s development.
  5. Health insurance contributes to families’ financial stability. Parents who have access to health services experience less financial strain, allowing them to focus on their parent-child relationships.

To learn more, read CLASP’s and ZERO TO THREE’s brief Health Insurance: A Critical Support for Infants, Toddlers, and their Families.