Feds to Corbett: Switch CHIP kids to Medicaid

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The federal government says Pennsylvania must shift tens of thousands of children from a state-subsidized health insurance program to Medicaid under the health care law.

Gov. Tom Corbett’s top insurance regulator, Michael Consedine, said Tuesday that the response is disappointing. He says the Corbett administration will explore options suggested by U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, such as a phased-in transition.

The requirement takes effect Jan. 1.

Sebelius says many other states prepared for the transition by ensuring Medicaid coverage for older children whose families earn up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level.

Consedine says some of the 50,000 children who have to switch programs will have to find a doctor who accepts Medicaid. But Sebelius says it’ll simplify coverage for families and advocates for the poor say children are better off under Medicaid anyway.

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