Families to Begin Receiving Letters on Future of CHP+

Kids and pregnant women could lose coverage at the end of January

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 27, 2017

Media Contact:
Marc Williams
303-866-3144

Denver, CO – Today the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing (Department) began sending informational letters to Children’s Health Plan Plus (CHP+) members advising them to start researching private health insurance options. Federal funding for the program ended on September 30, 2017. Colorado has sufficient funds to operate the CHP+ program until January 31, 2018; today’s letter is intended to urge CHP+ members to be prepared in the event the federal government fails to reinstate funding.

There are no immediate changes to CHP+ eligibility, enrollment, renewals, or benefits and CHP+ members should continue using their benefits as normal. The purpose of today’s letter is to ensure members are aware the program will end January 31, 2018 if federal funding is not renewed, and begin researching other health coverage options.

“It is critically important for families to start planning for potential changes in their health coverage if the federal government doesn’t renew funding for the CHP+ program,” said Gretchen Hammer, Medicaid Director. “We remain cautiously optimistic Congress will renew federal funding, but we want our families enrolled in CHP+ to be aware that changes may be coming and not be caught off guard should the program come to an end. We encourage families to sign up for electronic notices and informational updates through their PEAK accounts so we can quickly reach them with updates.”

The Department is working closely with Connect for Health Colorado in case Congress does not renew funding. The loss of CHP+ coverage would be a life change event and result in a special enrollment period through the marketplace. Some individuals currently covered by CHP+ could qualify for financial assistance to purchase a health plan offered by Connect for Health Colorado.

The Department is also collaborating with CHP+ health plans, stakeholders, counties, eligibility partners and providers in writing letters to help members understand what is happening with the CHP+ program and how it may impact them.

“It’s frustrating that our CHP+ families are facing this uncertainty, especially during the holidays,” said Tom Massey, interim executive director of the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing. “We are hopeful the federal government will act quickly to renew funding and alleviate further worry by Colorado families who rely on this important program.”

The Department is posting regular updates on its Future of CHP+ web page which includes Frequently Asked Questions for members and stakeholders. The Department will also be working with the Health Maintenance Organizations that administer Child Health Plan Plus to send updates directly to members as information is known.

 

About the Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+): Currently more than 75,000 kids and nearly 800 pregnant women are enrolled in CHP+ program.  Kids and pregnant women earning up to $5,330 a month (for a family of 4) can qualify for coverage.

About the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing: The Department administers Health First Colorado (Colorado's Medicaid Program) and Child Health Plan Plus as well as a variety of other programs for Coloradans who qualify. For more information about the Department, please visit Colorado.gov/hcpf.

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