We joined more than 1,000 organizations that signed onto a letter urging Congress to immediately enact a five-year extension of the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Funding for CHIP expired on September 30, 2017. This is the first time in the program’s history that Congress has allowed funding to expire.
CHIP provides low-cost health coverage to children in families that earn too much money to qualify for Medicaid. In North Carolina, 59 percent of children receive health insurance through CHIP and Medicaid. CHIP was created in 1997 with bipartisan support.
Without the extension, several states would run out of funding for the program in January. North Carolina anticipates that it would run out of funding in March. Currently, more than 200,000 children in North Carolina receive health insurance through CHIP. Some states have already begun freezing enrollment.
In late December, Congress provided temporary relief with short-term legislation to help fund the program through the end of March.