Almost 400,000 New York children currently enrolled in Child Health Plus (CHP), New York’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), would end up paying more for health coverage under the new health exchange proposed in federal health care reform.
The House bill would eliminate CHIP in 2013 and the Senate proposes to eliminate it in 2015, moving the children into the new health exchange. While subsidies would be available to families below 400 % the federal poverty level (FPL), they would not come close to keeping the costs at the same level of the CHIP program. In fact, costs would increase more than 10 percent for many families.
For example, under the House proposal, a family of four earning $55,000 a year (250% of the FPL) would currently pay $360 a year (less than 1% of their annual income) for children’s health coverage in New York’s program. That same family would pay more than ten times as much – $3,840 a year (7% of their annual income)– for their children’s coverage in the new health exchange.
A study commissioned by First Focus, a bipartisan children’s advocacy organization, confirmed that CHIP is a significantly better program for low-income families than any proposal pending in Congress.
In order for New York’s children to continue to have access to affordable and comprehensive health coverage, New York’s children and families need Congress to make sure that CHIP is not eliminated in the final health care reform legislation.
*Thanks to Kinda Serafi and Jennifer Rojas of the Children’s Defense Fund-New York for contributing to this post*