Published: Fri, January 12, 2018
IT | By Lester Massey

Fed extension gives Mass. CHIP funding through March

Fed extension gives Mass. CHIP funding through March

That's true even though the Children's Health Insurance Program technically expired on September 30 after Congress failed to renew funding. Now, numerous 9 million children enrolled in the program, as well as pregnant mothers and babies born over the next while risk being without health insurance coverage as CHIP funding runs out.

If Congress does not act on CHIP, state governments will be forced to freeze enrollment, cut benefits, end their programs or come up with another source of money.

In November, the U.S. House passed a bill that Republican leaders said would provide a five-year extension to the CHIP program.

Lawmakers in the House Energy and Commerce Committee previously fought over how to pay for CHIP, but Committee Chairman Greg Walden, R-Ore., said the reduced cost estimate would eliminate many roadblocks. When funding for CHIP is reduced under current law, some parents would try to keep coverage for their children and enroll them in a family policy through the marketplaces.

In December, state officials believed DE would run out of funding by January 31. The delay in reauthorizing CHIP has confused children's health advocates because both parties have supported CHIP since its creation in 1997.

About 1.7 million children in 20 states and the District of Columbia could be at risk of losing their CHIP coverage in February because of the shortfall, according to a report Wednesday by the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families.

If that accident happened later this year, though, Natali, 50, of Aliquippa, Pa., might be scrambling. On Thursday, the office said renewing CHIP would actually create a "net savings because the federal costs of the alternatives to providing coverage through CHIP. are larger than the costs of providing coverage through CHIP during that period". Many can not afford coverage in the private market. "We should stop the uncertainty and permanently extend CHIP".

"These families don't know if the rug is being pulled out from them at any time", he said.

Keeping kids healthy should be a top priority, he said.

Navsaria also worries that many parents will be surprised if their children are suddenly without coverage.

Williams said in her e-mail that the $135 million now won't be immediately needed because of the December spending bill.

Beth Kidder, a deputy secretary for the Agency for Health Care Administration, told legislators that the short-term fix is expected to keep Florida's program running through the end of March.

If Pennsylvania cancels CHIP, she likely won't bring Javier, 2, for his two-year checkup unless there's something clearly wrong with him.

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