CHIP, created in 1997, is a bipartisan success story providing health insurance for children of working families who lack access to Medicaid and can't afford private coverage.
It also provides support for children with special health care needs. Nearly 9 million children are covered. Nineteen states use CHIP to cover pregnancy and prenatal care for about 370,000 women each year.
CHIP funding expired Sept. 30. Millions are now left with fear and uncertainty. This missed deadline has real implications for real children and families.
Without funding from Congress, states will be forced to make drastic cuts to the program.
It is past time for Congress to pass funding for this program. It is sad the United States is incapable of providing care for its neediest citizens. CHIP helps to reduce disparities in coverage for communities of color — more than half of Hispanic and black children are covered through CHIP and Medicaid.
Carol Ring, Schererville