New Children’s Health Insurance Program Bills Introduced

Senate and House Democrats celebrated Valentine’s Day by introducing bills to extend CHIP funding through 2019. Senate Democrats, led by Senator Sherrod Brown, have co-sponsored S.522, “Protecting & Retaining Our Children’s Health Insurance Program Act of 2015 (PRO-CHIP)”. On the House Side, Representative Gene Green introduced companion bill H.R.919.

The Senate bill would extend the following through 2019:

  • Funding for states including the ACA’s 23% matching rate increase
  • Express lane eligibility (ELE) authorization
  • Performance bonuses, referred to as the “Performance Incentive Program”
  • Health quality and obesity prevention demonstration projects
  • Outreach and enrollment grants.

You can read more about the bills from our Senate/House bill side-by-side summary.

In the meantime, the bipartisan duo Hillary Clinton and former GOP Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist penned an Op-Ed calling on their Congressional colleagues to get moving to ensure kids’ care is not interrupted. They write:

As 2015 unfolds, we know Congress will continue to debate the future of health care reform. We most likely won’t see eye to eye about some of the more contentious questions. But one thing everyone should be able to agree on is that our most vulnerable children shouldn’t be caught in the crossfire.

Will the CHIP love continue in the coming weeks? Stay tuned…

Elisabeth Wright Burak is a Senior Fellow at the Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy’s Center for Children and Families.