Mon
Oct 16 2017
07:41 am

Current authorization for spending has expired for the CHIP Program (Children's Health Insurance Program). The CHIP program "helps lower- and middle-income families that otherwise earn too much to be eligible for Medicaid." It covers 9 million children across the country and 370,000 pregnant women a year.

Funding lapsed Sept. 30, 2017. Some states have only enough funding to last to the end of the year. "Minnesota, however, was among the most imperiled because it had spent all its CHIP money. State officials said Tuesday that the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services was giving Minnesota $3.6 million from unspent national funds to cover CHIP this month."

"The funding renewal was not a priority among Republican leaders, who have spent most of this year trying to replace the Affordable Care Act and dramatically overhaul the Medicaid program. Some in Congress also thought the Sept. 30 deadline was squishy since states could extend their existing funds beyond that."

CHIP was created in 1997 as a joint state-federal health insurance program for low to moderate income children and pregnant women who are not Medicaid eligible.

"Under current law, the program has to be reauthorized every few years; Saturday’s deadline was the product of a two-year extension negotiated in 2015, the most recent episode of brinkmanship over whether Congress would act in time to avoid disruption. This time it failed."

The Senate Finance Committee advanced a bill this week to extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for five years. Now it has to be approved by the Senate, the House, and the President.

Hopefully they will get this done before the end of the year.

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bizgrrl's picture

Still waiting. The House

Still waiting.

The House passed a bill on Friday that would provide five years of funds for the popular Children’s Health Insurance Program, over vehement objections from Democrats who opposed the way it would be financed.
...
The Senate plans major surgery on the legislation to avoid the partisan strife that split the House. But some states may have no choice but to freeze enrollment or start to shut down the program before Congress clears legislation to renew funding. No new funds have been available since Oct. 1.
...
But lawmakers clashed over how to pay for them. To offset the cost, the House bill would increase premiums for Medicare beneficiaries with income of more than $500,000 a year, remove some lottery winners from the Medicaid rolls, and cut $6.35 billion over 10 years from a fund established by the Affordable Care Act to pay for public health initiatives such as preventing diabetes, heart disease, cancer and opioid abuse.

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