FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 26, 2018
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
CHIP SERVICES REMAIN AVAILABLE TO SOUTH TEXAS
CHIP Will Continue Serving Children Amidst Contract Cancellation
AUSTIN - The Texas Health and Human Services commission canceled five of its upcoming contracts with healthcare providers to cover Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) services in South Texas counties. Representative Ryan Guillen (D- Rural South Texas), has long supported CHIP, and wants to assure constituents that healthcare services will still be available throughout District 31 and surrounding areas.
"The CHIP program has ensured that our children have access to the health care they need," said Guillen. "CHIP has been instrumental in many children's lives, and those who have benefited from this bipartisan program will continue to do so."
CHIP is a federal block-grant program that was created in 1997 to improve health insurance coverage for children and to reduce the rate of children without insurance. Since then, CHIP has proven to be incredibly effective in lowering the rate of uninsured children across the country from 15 percent to 5 percent. However, this year it was found that five contracts with healthcare providers to administer CHIP had errors in the bid scoring process. This led to the cancelation of these contracts, which mainly covered rural and south Texas. The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) is investigating the issue and confirmed that CHIP services will not be interrupted while HHSC implements a new bidding process for the contracts.
Representative Guillen recognizes the importance of CHIP and has been a longtime supporter of expanding and improving the program. Guillen was an author of a bill that aimed to increase enrollment and raise public awareness of CHIP. Currently, CHIP covers more than 400,000 children in Texas; additionally, almost 250,000 children benefit indirectly from CHIP's Medicaid incentives. CHIP is vital to the residents of South Texas, and Guillen is pleased that it's services will still be accessible to families.
"Healthcare for our children is a vital issue and needs to be monitored and supported," said Guillen. "CHIP services must continue to be available to help South Texans, and I will continue to work to make sure that a reality."
Serving ten rural South Texas counties in the Texas House of Representatives, Ryan Guillen is known for his hard work, fierce independence, and relentless efforts for South Texas families. Recently, Capitol Inside called him a “House Bill Machine,” and a “one-person assembly line for legislation.” Since elected, few other legislators have passed more bills than Guillen. Sign up for updates at ryanguillen.com, facebook.com/representative.guillen, and twitter.com/ryanguillen