Kansas making alternate plans for children's health coverage

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The state of Kansas is making plans to keep health coverage for kids, should the federal Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) remain in limbo.

However, the plan carries a big price tag.

Kansas Dept. of Health and Environment officials told a KanCare oversight committee Tuesday that the state's current funds for CHIP will run out in March if Congress does not act to re-authorize the program.

Nearly 40,000 Kansas children get health care under CHIP.

KDHE says, if funding runs out, they'll transfer the kids to Medicaid. They say they will create a new category with the same eligibility as CHIP and would anticipate a seamless transition.

However, it would cost $37.7 million dollars in the current 2018 fiscal year and $53.4 million in FY19.

The legislature would need to approve the funding.