Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
Health | By Jay Jacobs

Extending CHIP Would Actually Save Taxpayers Money: CBO

Extending CHIP Would Actually Save Taxpayers Money: CBO

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that an extension of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) would cost the government $800 million over 10 years. KidCare is the umbrella name given to four different children's health programs: the federal children's health insurance program commonly called CHIP; Medikids, which is the traditional Medicaid program for children; Children's Medical Services Network, which provides care to medically complex children, and the Florida Healthy Kids program.

As members of Congress debate ways to pay for the program, Montoya said the prospect that he and his family may need several hundred dollars more per month to cover health care premiums is constantly on their minds.

The House passed a bill in November extending CHIP for five more years, but the Senate has yet to do so.

"I think the fact that we are watching and sort of seeing what's happening up in Washington, D.C. with the CHIP program and the funding makes this task force even more important", Duran said.

The agency has yet to specify which individual states will be running out of CHIP funding first.

. While the 20-year-old program enjoys wide support from Republicans and Democrats, they have been unable to compromise on an extension over a funding dispute.

"While the balance in the redistribution pool may be sufficient to cover February shortfalls enabling all states to cover children through February, it has become increasingly hard to predict how long funds will last for any particular state", the center concluded (PDF).

States are struggling with how to save the program and are choosing between finding other sources for the money, freezing enrollment or shutting it down entirely. Some states could see their financial resources run dry for children's health insurance coverage by the end of this month. But Republican leaders in Congress all but abandoned the program in the fall and devoted their time to trying to pass an unpopular tax bill that will increase the federal debt by $1.8 trillion over the next decade, according to a Congressional Budget Office analysis released last week.

Federal funding for CHIP originally expired October 1. Many can not afford coverage in the private market. The group practice hasn't changed any scheduling for CHIP patients, but he said "families are terrified" about the coverage disappearing.

"As a previous supporter of the CHIP program, Sen. They might not have a family physician, or a clear support system".

Since 1997, CHIP has provided healthcare to millions of Americans and helped to drastically reduce the uninsured rate of children. "We will have to decide between their health and spending the money on something else", she said.

If Pennsylvania cancels CHIP, she likely won't bring Javier, 2, for his two-year checkup unless there's something clearly wrong with him. It cost $15 billion in 2016, according to data from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

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