Funding for the federal Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, expired last week. Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch helped create the program for low-income children in the 1990s.
On Wednesday morning, the Senate Finance Committee passed Hatch’s bill to reauthorize funding for another five years.
“I wish we had passed legislation reauthorizing CHIP weeks ago,” Hatch said Tuesday evening on a tele-town hall with constituents. “But I believe we’ll pass my bill with plenty of time to ensure the program continues uninterrupted.”
CHIP covers 9 million children nationwide, including 19,000 kids in Utah.
Some states could run out of money for the program by the end of the year. Last week Utah notified the federal government that it will end the program unless the state receives funding.