KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Lawmakers Agree CHIP Needs To Be Funded, But Do Little To Work Through Partisan Differences

Delays from any partisan bickering could force many states, which soon will exhaust their federal allotments, to start winding down the popular Children's Health Insurance Program over the next few weeks or months.

Modern Healthcare: CHIP Funding Deadline Looms As Senators Signal Bipartisan Support
Republican and Democratic senators agreed Thursday that they need to extend funding for Children's Health Insurance Program, which covers 8.4 million low- and moderate-income children. But there was little or no discussion during the Senate Finance Committee hearing on how to resolve thorny disagreements about details of the program or how long to extend federal funding, which ends Sept. 30. (Meyer, 9/7)

CQ: Senate Finance Kicks Off Children's Health Care Debate
CHIP has traditionally found bipartisan support from both sides of the aisle. The program was spearheaded by the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., and Senate Finance Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, 20 years ago. During the Obama administration's most recent renewal, Congress updated the program five months before the September 2015 deadline. However, partisan fights this year over a comprehensive health care overhaul (HR 1628) delayed action and led to the cancellation of the committee’s originally scheduled May hearing. (Raman, 9/7)

And in other congressional news --

Stat: NIH Budget Increased By $2 Billion Under Senate Plan
Senate appropriators on Thursday approved a plan that would increase spending for the National Institutes of Health by $2 billion and maintain nearly $300 million in grants for family planning programs that a House committee had sought to eliminate. The plan would also fund the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration by $387 million more than the amount recommended by President Trump’s budget blueprint. (Facher, 9/7)

Modern Healthcare: Health Centers Urge Congress To Act To Avoid Mass Closures
Brian Toomey is worried about uninsured patients that come to his community health centers in North Carolina. The majority of the federal funds that help keep the center on track will disappear at the end of the month baring congressional action. But between the fallout from Hurricane Harvey, the need to increase the debt ceiling and pressing calls to draft a new law to protect undocumented children, Toomey who is CEO of Piedmont Health Services, is worried that cries for help from health centers will fall through the cracks. (Dickson, 9/7)

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