Not too much time has passed since the government stopped funding the Children's Health Insurance Program and left 112,000 children in New Jersey without coverage. An overall 9 million children in the United States lost funding at the end of September. The Senate Health Committee moved a bipartisan bill that would provide $100 million over five years, but when it got to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, it decided some CHIP funding must come out of the disease prevention fund in Obamacare.
If the bill fails, at least 5 states will run out of funding before New Year's Day. New Jersey's fund will remain solvent until late spring or early summer. In Pennsylvania, the 176,000 children covered by CHIP could find themselves without coverage by February.
The uninsured rate for those under 18 has plummeted from 14 percent to 4.8 percent. We will see what is the result of the voting today and what lies in the future for the Children's Health Insurance Program.