Children's Health Insurance Program

LYNDONVILLE – During Congress’s latest attempt at repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act they failed to reauthorize funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).CHIP covers nearly nine million children nation wide.


Here in Vermont there are about 4,600 children that receive their health insurance through the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Those children are then able to get routine check-ups, doctor visits, vaccinations, prescriptions, and other common medial care needs.

So what happens to the health care under CHIP since Congress failed to reauthorize the program?

“Vermont is a Medicaid expansion state and requires a Maintenance of Effort. Vermont will then cover CHIP insured children under regular Medicaid until the Maintenance of Effort expires in September of 2019,” said Ben Trueman with the Vermont Department of Health.

Most children in CHIP are in families that have an annual income of below twice the poverty level. According to Trueman, “CHIP is a source of funding that covers children that fall between 237 percent and 312 percent of the federal poverty level.”

There are two ways a state can operate the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Either a stand-alone program or through a Medicaid expansion program.