Approximately 9 million children across the U.S. receive services of health care through the CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program), passed in 1997 with bipartisan congressional support to provide coverage of health care for children from qualified families with moderate and low incomes. Oregon, Nevada, Montana, and Massachusetts have over 300,000 children that depend on the CHIP. However, if the Congress does not act anytime soon, these children could lose the health care that they rely on.
Since CHIP started, the percentage of kids that are uninsured has declined from 15 percent down to 5.3 percent. Kids that would otherwise be not covered by insurance are now capable of visiting doctors for the routine checkups all children should have and receive the treatment they need in case they are hurt or sick: Whether they are suffering from a broken bone, sore throat, or even a life-threatening disease. CHIP does not just provide children with insurance coverage; it indirectly gives financial stability to many working families that rely on the program for coverage of their kid’s health care. Many of these parents would otherwise be devastated financially by their children’s hospital bills.
Now, the CHIP program is about to be eliminated. As Congress debated the proposals of the health care, federal funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program was allowed to end in late Sept. The program became law 20 years ago, and it was the success story of a bipartisan. It will take the action of a bipartisan in the coming days to avoid the failure of a Congress that is going to hurt many of the United States children. This possibility also terrifies governors.
According to the CHIP Payment and Access Commission and federal Medicaid, almost all states will exhaust their federal CHIP portions early next year: Some will even exhaust them sooner. When their money runs out, their states will face cuts to their children’s health care coverage. That’s why over the last few months, governors have worked with federal official and congressional delegations to provide bipartisan strategies for reauthorizing the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
If the program doesn’t get reauthorized are the states are not able to find ways of making up the difference to pay for the historically joint between the state and federal program, children are going to suffer. As early as next year in February, one in every ten children in Montana and Oregon could lose access to the complete health coverage that they have now.