New Federal CHIP Law Will Protect Florida’s Children

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is extremely important to Florida as it helps about 345,000 Florida children get the health care they need to support their healthy development and succeed in school.

CHIP has also worked hand-in-hand with Medicaid to reduce Florida’s child uninsured rate to an all time low of 6.2 percent in 2016. This is still higher than the national rate of 4.5 percent.

The new federal CHIP law was good news for Florida’s children as it should protect their access to affordable health coverage for the next decade.

This week we released a report and hosted a webinar with the Health Affinity funders of the Florida Philanthropic Network on how the new CHIP law will work for Florida children and families.

The new law would:

  • Protect children by ensuring that Florida cannot rollback income eligibility or raise premiums for children’s health coverage for ten years.
  • Focus needed attention on improving quality of care by requiring Florida and all states to report on quality “indicators” for children in Medicaid and CHIP beginning in 2024.
  • Slowly taper off CHIP’s enhanced federal match rate to states but provide Florida with more federal funding than was expected for FY 2020.

In Florida, CHIP funds coverage for children in families of three earning up to about $3,723 per month. Florida uses federal CHIP funding to operate three programs: MediKids, Healthy Kids and the Children’s Medical Services Managed Care Plan. The CHIP matching funds are also supporting lawfully residing immigrant children in both Medicaid and CHIP.

The report is the second in a series of reports on CHIP recently published by Georgetown University CCF and the Health Affinity Funders of the Florida Philanthropic Network.

On June 7, CCF and FPN hosted a webinar on the report on June 7. Watch the archived webinar and download the slides below.

Joan Alker
Joan Alker is the Executive Director of the Center for Children and Families and a Research Professor at the Georgetown McCourt School of Public Policy