HOUSTON - Health care for thousands of low-income Houstonians is in jeopardy because federal funding is being denied.
Maybe you've heard of Central Care Integrated Health Services. It operates six clinics throughout Houston, including in Third Ward. Funding comes from CHIP, the Children's Health Insurance Program, but the funds will run out in March. The clinics provide primary and preventative health care, but may be forced to close if more government funding doesn't come through. Quickly.
Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee calls the clinics a vital lifeline for vulnerable families; many who can't afford health insurance.
"Specifically, we're calling on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and its subsidiary agency, the Human Resources and Services Administration, to suspend or refrain from issuing any agency directive or any action that would lead directly or indirectly to the closure of any of the six health care facilities operated by Central Care until we have a time to resolve some of the issues," the congresswoman said.
The clinics treat all ages, six days a week. The future of CCIHS may be determined as early as next week during an emergency court hearing scheduled for Monday. In order to keep the doors open, it needs a real financial shot in the arm.