Families Brace For Possible Chip Funds Bankruptcy
One of the greatest legacies of Medicaid was the Children’s Health Insurance Program, also known as CHIP. The CHIP covers around 90 million children in the United States, thanks to their parents paying for the Medicaid program. This can help ease parents’ worries and responsibilities in providing their children’s healthcare and well-being. However, ever since US President Donald Trump took his seat in the White House, CHIP funds may be on the brink of bankruptcy. The Congress had passed a stopgap bill earlier in order to control the expenditures and the policy release of the said program to keep it running until March this year.
Centers for MEDICARE and MEDICAID services stated that their funds will dimish as early as next week.
Contrary to what the Congress had stated, the CMMS revealed that the funds for CHIP program may diminish sooner than expected. This leaves over 90 million children at risk of losing their CHIP coverage. What will affected families do if their nightmare comes true? How can they even pay for their kids’ medical check-ups, healthcare, immunizations, and mental health therapy? Here’s what you need to know:
Rebecca Ribiero, 45 years old and a hospital worker in Newfield, NY, said that this latest development is a recipe for a sick society.
Rebecca, who has a 12-year-old kid named Max who suffers from a learning disorder, was worried what will happen to her kid now that he’s at risk of losing the CHIP coverage. She said that she and her husband are now discussing which employer would offer the best insurance coverage for their son. She’s even lucky that they still have a choice to get an insurance coverage for their son. But still, the repercussions of availing a separate one will cost them dearly.
Their bills will go up to $200/month compared to the $45 they pay right now. They already have a limited budget with a simple lifestyle, and they honestly don’t know if they can still afford to pay for their basic needs. With CHIP, the family can get reimbursement whenever the school would conduct medical testing as well as a medical check-up for his son. But now, they may have to pay an extra cost to cover their son’s medical check-up aside from the educational plan they’re paying for him. She cannot accept the moral negligence of the Congress by letting this program fall into uncertainty. It creates a recipe for sick kids who will become sick adults in the future.
Sara Rua thinks the suppressions of CHIP is triggered more by politics.
Sarah Mullen Rua, who lives in Texas, covers their four-year-old daughter, Eleanor. They were blessed to have a healthy child, so they only need to maintain preventive care for their daughter’s medical check-ups and immunizations. But they shudder to think what would happen if CHIP would stop funding their daughter. It means they need to pay for an employer-based insurance which is more costly for them. What’s worse, Sara is the only one with a college degree which is why she may need to work harder in order to sustain their lives. Her husband’s income is only seasonal whenever they have a band tour, so she cannot rely on him for stability. Sarah believed that the CHIP will always have enough money to fund the program. However, because of political conflict, she believes that’s the reason why it’s being suppressed.
Sara Nolan, on the other hand, is uncertain about her kids’ future.
Sara Nolan, as well as her husband John Gonzales, has two stepsons, Kai and Quinn, and their own son Ronen who is just two years old. Sara and her husband rely on the CHIP to cover the cost of regular medical check-ups and their immunizations. Her two stepsons suffer from various allergic reactions and need optometrists, while their youngest son suffers from febrile seizures since he was just a child. Thanks to the CHIP, they were able to waive their expenses on attending neurologists. But now that these expensive costs are not within their reach, they don’t know if they can still afford to give their children the much needed medical check-ups. She said that it’s unfair to deprive their children of their rights to have a quality life and health care, regardless of their family’s financial status.
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