|By State Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne)
State officials recently launched a public awareness campaign to bring more attention to the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which provides a vital health service to thousands of families across Pennsylvania.
Entitled “CHIP Strong,” the federally funded television, radio and social media messages encourage residents to enroll their children in the high-quality health insurance program, which includes dental and vision health care coverage.
Currently, CHIP provides free or low-cost health insurance for more than 180,000 Pennsylvania children, including 4,356 in Luzerne County, and about 9 million kids nationwide. The program provides health insurance to uninsured children and teens up to age 19 who are not eligible for or enrolled in Medicaid. CHIP is available for families whose income is above the poverty level.
Children who have health insurance generally have better health throughout their childhood and into their teens. They are more likely to:
- Receive needed shots that prevent disease.
- Get treatment for recurring illnesses such as ear infections and asthma.
- Access preventative care that keeps them healthy.
- Get sick less frequently.
- Receive the treatment they need when they are sick.
- Maintain better attendance and performance at school.
Signed into law in 1992, Pennsylvania’s CHIP program was the first of its kind in the nation. Ten years ago, CHIP was expanded to offer coverage to all children. Since 2009, more than 850,000 Pennsylvania kids have enrolled in CHIP.
For more information on CHIP and how to enroll, visit www.chipcoverspakids.com
Representative Tarah Toohil
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact: Rep. Toohil’s Office