• Fact Sheet
  • February 28, 2017

CHIP is Critical to Children's Health

Funding is Currently Set to Expire in 2017

  • Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) are vital for children. The programs together provide health care coverage to 36 million children. Our country needs these children to grow up to become healthy adults who will be our nation’s future leaders.
  • CHIP continues to play a critical role in the coverage landscape for children. To provide coverage for children who fell above Medicaid eligibility levels, CHIP was created in 1997 with strong bipartisan support. CHIP plays a critical role in the coverage landscape for children, providing health insurance coverage for 6 million children.
  • To ensure maximum stability for children, families and states, Congress should enact a long-term CHIP extension. Current federal funding for CHIP is slated to expire at the end of FY 2017. Long-term funding provides predictability and encourages states to make further programmatic improvements in Medicaid and CHIP for children.
  • The next CHIP extension should advance the goal of strengthening coverage and quality for all children. Children should have access to age-appropriate benefits and providers and receive timely care to promote healthy child development. Any CHIP extension should also continue the federal investment in pediatric health care quality to improve care and lower costs for families and purchasers of care, such as state and federal governments.
  • CHIP, together with Medicaid, has brought the rate of uninsured U.S. children to an all-time low. If CHIP is not extended beyond 2017, many CHIP-enrolled children will likely become underinsured or uninsured altogether, which would threaten the historic gains made in insuring children over the past two decades.