Significantly more children get health insurance coverage after increases in federal matching funds to states for Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), according to new research from the University of Michigan.
The research, published Monday in the journal Health Affairs, showed that a 10-percentage-point increase in the federal match for Medicaid and CHIP, similar to the increase that occurred with the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, is associated with an increase of 1.9 percent in the number of children enrolled in Medicaid nationwide, or approximately 500,000 additional children.
"Throughout the past decade, Medicaid and CHIP enrollment for children has increased, while the level of uninsurance has decreased. Our study suggests that these combined federal and state programs have succeeded in providing health insurance coverage for children, even as the number of children in poor and low-income families has increased," says Stephen Patrick, M.D., M.P.H., M.S., the study's lead author and a neonatal-perinatal medicine fellow in the Department of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases at C.S. Mott Children's Hospital at the University of Michigan.
Patrick is a 2010-12 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar at the University of Michigan.
"Medicaid and CHIP work as a partnership between states and the federal government that benefits children," says Matthew M. Davis, M.D., M.A.P.P., associate professor in the Child Health Evaluation and Research Unit and the Division of General Medicine at the U-M Medical School and associate professor of public policy at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
"We found a strong relationship between the federal share of funding, called the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage, and Medicaid enrollment for children over the past decade," says Davis, who is senior author on the paper.