House Votes to Extend CHIP Funding, Some States May Exhaust Funds Before Senate Can Turn Into Law

On November 3, the House voted to extend federal funding for the Children’s Health Insurance, or CHIP, program, passing the measure with a 242-174 bipartisan vote. But the bill also must pass in the Senate before it can take effect, so many states will likely run out of money before they receive any new CHIP funds.

The Center for Children and Families at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute reported that at least six states – Arizona, California, the District of Columbia, Minnesota, Ohio and Oregon – are predicting they will run out of money by the end of the year or early in January. Six other states – Colorado, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington – have announced their intention to take action before the end of the year even if their funding does not run out. Several states are expected to start sending notices to families soon that they may lose coverage, along with information on purchasing marketplace insurance plans.

States’ budgets for the current year were adopted with the expectation of continued federal CHIP funding. Without action by the Senate, many states will be forced to discontinue CHIP coverage for children, which insures nearly 9 million children nationwide.