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What Will Happen to CHIP Kids?
December 16, 2013

Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides health and behavioral health care coverage to about 50,000 children that, under the Affordable Care Act, should be moved to the Medicaid program on January 1, 2014. As is being broadly reported, the Corbett administration continues to work to avoid this change and keep these children in CHIP. There are now indications that an immediate transition to Medicaid won't occur and that the administration’s approach for the 50,000 children will be to offer families the option of enrolling in Medicaid or in a commercial health insurance plan. While most policy experts feel that CHIP primary and dental care services are good, behavioral health services for children offer fewer treatment options, limited choices compared to HealthChoices, and challenges to service access. For behavioral health providers, access to provider panels and inadequate contract rates have also been a disparity between physical and behavioral health care community provider systems.

RCPA will continue to track developments between state and federal government relative to the population impacted and encourages members to carefully monitor for sudden changes in consumer insurance eligibility and coverage.

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