“Every day I see patients in my practice who stand to lose their health care if Congress does not act to extend CHIP funding. Consider my patient who grew up in foster care, put herself through college and now earns a living as a freelance clothing designer. She is now a mother herself, and I treat her children. Her 1-year-old son has asthma and her 3-year-old daughter has a peanut allergy. They are able to follow up with me every three months and keep a ready supply of lifesaving medications because they qualify for CHIP.”
-Dr. Dorothy R. Novick of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in the Washington Post
House Republicans are dedicated to children across America having access to quality, affordable health care. One of the key ways we can provide that is through a program called CHIP, which Dr. Novick explains above.
CHIP stands for the Children’s Health Insurance Program which was created with bipartisan support in 1997, and was instrumental in lowering the percentage of uninsured children in our country.
Before this program, 14 percent of American children couldn’t go to the doctor, get a flu shot, carry an inhaler, or cast their broken arms without footing a huge bill. The CHIP program, in effect, offered a safety net to those kids coming from low and moderate income families.
We are committed to reauthorizing this vital program, which is why we passed the CHAMPIONING HEALTHY KIDS Act (H.R. 3922) on November 3, 2017. Because we believe that vulnerable populations, especially kids, deserve to be looked after.
This bill doesn’t just extend CHIP — it includes funding for numerous other public health programs, like Community Health Centers (CHCs) and Teaching Health Centers (THCs). Want to know more? Check out the specifics below:
Five Year Extension of The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP):
In 2015, more than 8.4 million children were insured through this program. This bill extends CHIP funding through FY 2022 and ensures that children continue to receive coverage through state CHIP programs rather than the ACA exchanges and Medicaid.
Two Year Extension of Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs):
These are community-based, patient-centered organizations that provide comprehensive health services to medically-underserved populations regardless of their ability to pay. The bill extends funding for these centers for two years under the Community Health Center Fund. In 2015, community health centers employed nearly 190,000 Americans and served over 24 million patients. One in 13 people nationwide rely on health centers for their medical and healthcare needs.
Two Year Extension for Teaching Health Centers (THC):
Among other things, this bill provides funding for the Teaching Health Center (THC) Graduate Medical Education. This is focused on bringing quality care to rural and underserved communities that don’t have the access to doctors that they need. Studies show that more than 50 percent of residents stay and practice where they train.
“This is about diversifying the available physician training sites, but that also cater to smaller, rural communities.”
-House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers
House Republicans are keeping their promises, and children’s access to health care is no different. With this vote, we are ensuring that we are providing them care for years to come. This is to ensure our children get the prescriptions and immunizations they need. To make sure they can go to the doctor when they have a cold. To safeguard the care they need when they break a bone or skin a knee. This is about providing for the most vulnerable among us.
Tell us what you think of our work on the CHAMPIONING HEALTHY KIDS Act.