April 17, 2020 CHIP Will Maintain Enrollment During COVID-19 Crisis On April 15, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) announced that it is “making temporary changes to Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to keep families enrolled in CHIP for the duration of the public health emergency and to ease access to medical services for children being screened or receiving treatment for COVID-19.” What is CHIP? The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is Pennsylvania’s program to provide health insurance to uninsured children and teens who are not eligible for or enrolled in Medical Assistance. For most families, the program is free. Families with incomes above the free CHIP limits pay low monthly premiums and copays for some services. CHIP covers any uninsured child or teen up to the age of 19 and guarantees 12 months of coverage unless the family no longer meets basic eligibility requirements. There is not a waiting list to enroll in the program. Caregivers must renew their coverage every year to continue receiving services. To learn more and apply, visit the CHIP webpage. Included Changes The following changes to CHIP will be in effect until the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency: Families will not be denied or disenrolled from coverage for administrative or financial reasons. An example of an administrative reason would be not being able to provide proof of income. Families will not pay a copay for services that are for COVID-19 screenings, testing, or treatment. Families who cannot provide paperwork to verify information on an application or renewal can provide self-attestation of information by signing the application or renewal. Families will be given more time to pay premiums, if needed. These changes were made due to the economic and financial hardship that many families across the Commonwealth are experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, families must still provide verification of information provided on an application and are still responsible for copays for services not related to COVID-19. Families will still be required to pay premiums, if applicable. However, if a family is unable to pay due to a decrease in or loss of income, that family must contact their managed care organization immediately and can request a reassessment because of an income change at any time. More Information For more information, read the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services’ full press release.