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What is CHIP?

The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides low-cost insurance converge to children in families who earn too much money to qualify for state Medicaid. If your child(ren) are eligible for CHIP, you do not have to purchase an insurance plan to cover them. Each state has its own rules and guidelines, but the CHIP program works closely with the states Medicaid program.

You can apply any time of year, by either calling 800-318-2596 or by filling out the application through the Health Insurance Marketplace and if your child(ren) qualify, coverage can start immediately.

What CHIP covers.

CHIP benefits are different in each state. But all states provide comprehensive coverage, including:

  • Routine check-ups
  • Immunizations
  • Doctor visits
  • Prescriptions
  • Dental and vision care
  • Inpatient and outpatient hospital care
  • Laboratory and X-ray services
  • Emergency services

There is no cost for routine ‘well child’ doctor and dental visits under CHIP. However, there may be co-payments for other services. In addition, some states charge a monthly premium for CHIP coverage but you will never pay more than 5% of your families yearly income.

What is the fate of the U.S. healthcare?

In the upcoming months, we can expect to hear what Donald Trump has in store for the Affordable Healthcare Act. During his campaigning, Trump made it known that a change was definitely part of his agenda as President. The policies that Trump is proposing will require extensive changes to the current U.S. regulatory and legal structure as well as to the tax law. The employer mandate and taxes on plans and insurers are what make the Affordable Health Care Act accessible, especially for those with lower incomes. A change in this structure makes funding unclear.

Appealing the Affordable Health Care act will not be an easy task as more than 20 million people have gained health insurance over the last three years due to the Affordable Health Care Act. In addition, folks on both sides on the political table like certain aspects of the Affordable Health Care Act, like the provisions regarding preexisting conditions, coverage for dependents up to age 26 and preventive care. Republicans have yet to propose an actual replacement for the Affordable Health Care Act which in turn could leave millions of people without coverage.

As of October, exchanges saw an increase of 22% on average.  Utah’s average was 30%, because the rates in Utah have historically been lower than across the nation. In addition, several large insurers existed the exchanges.

Rest assured, any changes will take time to implement. The new President-elect will face many challenges repealing a policy that has insured millions.

 

Five changes you may want to make on your insurance when you retire.

Retirement is an exciting time in life. Typically, it also means you are living on a fixed income. There a few insurance adjustments you might want to look into, they can save you money and also increase your coverage where needed.

  1. Ask about car insurance discounts and coverage. Not commuting for work and driving fewer miles could save you money by reducing your rates.
  2. Check into your home owner’s policy. Often times insurance companies offer a discount for retirees due to the fact that retires are at home more often.
  3. Take a look at your life insurance. If your house is paid off and your kids are grown and you have saved enough funds to support you and your spouse, you may no longer need life insurance.
  4. Be sure to sign up for Medicare, the federal governments health insurance program for people 65 years of age and older. You can sign up starting three months before your 65th
  5. Save money for long-term care or purchase a long-term care insurance policy. In many cases, Medicare won’t cover what you might need in the future in terms of daily care, or other tasks that you may need assistance with.