Children in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Child-Only Cases with Relative Caregivers. 3.3.4 Summary


The overall picture from the analysis of the SIPP data is quite interesting. Relative to other groups on TANF, the TANCOR group did not have the same rates of public coverage, whether for WIC, Food Stamps, or Medicaid. While this finding may be because coverage flags were for household coverage, a similar pattern was observed for KINCARE children, except that they had even less public coverage than did the TANFCOR group. In general, except for coverage issues, the TANFCOR group did better on well-being indicators than the others on TANF, but worse than the KINCARE, LOWINC, and OTHER groups. The LOWINC and OTHER groups were likely to be wealthier than KINCARE and TANFCOR groups, as well as having parental caregivers. In trying to assess the relative import of economic resources and caregiver characteristics on child well-being, it seems that both the KINCARE and TANFCOR groups had limited access to public assistance, and the same nonparental (likely to be a grandparent) caregiver. The pattern of TANFCOR faring better than other TANF groups and worse than KINCARE, LOWINC, and OTHER was consistent across dimensions of well-being.

Aside from the public coverage that seems weak for both KINCARE and TANFCOR groups, the KINCARE group rates are consistently better on economic well-being measures, including housing and food security. TANFCOR children were the most likely to have been held back or not be doing advanced work, and as such did worse than KINCARE children on educational well-being measures as well. If this finding is even partially due to the trauma of separation from a parental caregiver, it is surprising that the same finding was not true of the KINCARE group. In terms of access and utilization of health care, the two groups were similar, except that KINCARE children had higher rates of private coverage and higher reports of dental visits in the past year.

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