Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
Overview of CHIP
Since its creation in 1997, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) has allowed states to expand health coverage voluntarily to children in families with incomes too high to qualify for traditional Medicaid but too low to afford private health insurance. Approximately 8 million children are currently covered through the program.
Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), improvements in Medicaid and CHIP have extended access to affordable health care coverage to millions of previously uninsured, non-Medicare eligible adults and children. The uninsured population reached a historic low. CHIP is not an entitlement, but rather an optional program in which states may elect to participate. The program is funded jointly by states and the federal government.
This differs from Medicaid, which, as an entitlement, requires the state to enroll all qualified applicants and allows the state to draw down federal funds to help cover any enrollees beyond its budgeted projection.
Because nearly 65 percent of family physicians participate in Medicaid and provide care for children, AAFP members have a major stake in ensuring CHIP remains a viable and useful means for providing care to at-risk children.
Recent AAFP Communications
AAFP Letter to OMB - June 19, 2019(2 page PDF)
AAFP Letter to Speak Ryan and Minority Leader Pelosi on CHIP Reauthorization - November 2, 2017(2 page PDF)
AAFP Statement for the Record to the Senate Finance Committee Hearing on CHIP - September 7, 2017(4 page PDF)
Joint Communications with Other Organizations
Didn't find what you were looking for? Search the CHIP document archive.