Families worried that children's health insurance will be cut
It took years for Dakota Flores to get the correct medications to effectively treat her 13-year-old son's ADHD, but they finally helped turn him from an angry child who was failing in school to a strong student in advanced-placement history and science classes, a member of the honor choir and a bass drummer in an award-winning drum corp.
But now the single mother of four is worried that her son may lose access to those medications, since she purchases his health insurance through the government-subsidized Children's Health Insurance Program, or CHIP. The program also assists with health insurance for her 11-year-old daughter, who has severe vision problems.
The state-administered program, which provides low-cost health insurance for 9 million children nationwide, lost its federal funding on Sept. 30, when it was not renewed. The short-term spending bill passed by Congress before the holiday recess includes $3 billion to help keep the program alive until March, but some states have already informed parents that they may lose their kids' insurance.