Funding CHIP for 10 years would actually save $6 billion: CBO


Before Congress passed the short-term funding fix in late December, CHIP programs survived on the states'unspent funds and a $3 billion pool of CHIP money controlled by CMS.

Jones became the 24 co-sponsor of the bill, the Keep Kids' Insurance Dependable and Secure (KIDS) Act of 2017.

By now perhaps you've heard that Republicans in Congress are denying health care to poor children, because what else would those robber barons do?

A press conference was held Thursday at the Kanawha City Health Center in Charleston where health care advocates discussed the benefits of CHIP and the importance of continuing to serve the almost 21,000 West Virginia children who depend on the coverage.

CHIP's authorization for federal funding expired September 30, 2017. "We have 2.6 million children who are enrolled in the Florida KidCare program, including the Medicaid (children)".

You may recall the news from a few days ago that extending the Children's Health Insurance Program would cost only $0.8 billion, which should make it very easy to pass. After last month's tax reform, CBO analysts found that funding CHIP for the next five years would add $800 million to the deficit over 10 years, rather than the $8.2 billion originally projected. By contrast, CHIP costs the federal government roughly $14.5 billion a year, or $145 billion over 10 years. But if CHIP comes back, the parent is the only one to remain on the policy, facing a cost for the coverage. But it's unclear whether CHIP will be resolved by then or at a later point.

Federal funding for CHIP originally expired October 1.

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Already, some states have begun to send out notices to families warning them that their children's insurance may no longer be available in the coming months.

Virginia and CT can promise to keep their CHIP program running only through February, officials said.

Alabama and Utah are among several states unsure how long their federal CHIP funding will last, according to interviews with state officials. Many can not afford coverage in the private market. Republicans proposed a series of deeply partisan spending cuts to cover the costs of extending CHIP, such as slashing Obamacare programs and Medicare.

Dr. Todd Wolynn, a Pittsburgh pediatrician, said families are reacting with "fear and disbelief" to CHIP's uncertain future. "We're going to have lower coverage for parents than we used to". The group practice hasn't changed any scheduling for CHIP patients, but he said "families are terrified" about the coverage disappearing.

Ariel Haughton of Pittsburgh said she's upset her federal lawmakers have left CHIP in flux for her two children and millions of kids around the country.

Families across America had to start 2018 anxious that their kids wouldn't have health care.