The West Steps: Keeping Colorado kids covered in 2023 and beyond

Written by: Children's Campaign
Date Posted: February 10, 2023

Hundreds of thousands of Coloradans are at risk of losing their health coverage over the course of the next year as the pandemic-era policy that has indefinitely kept people enrolled in Medicaid and Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+) is set to come to an end. Since early 2020, the complex, burdensome processes required to stay enrolled in public health coverage have been paused, resulting in a reduction to the state’s uninsured rate. The impact of this pause was especially significant for our kids: The child uninsured rate in Colorado improved from 5.5% to 4.6% between 2019 and 2021. Colorado can ensure that families with low incomes can continue to access the health care they need to thrive by providing longer periods of continuous Medicaid and CHP+ coverage to young children and other critical populations. 

This week on The West Steps, we are joined by Erin Miller, Vice President of Health Initiatives at the Colorado Children’s Campaign; Liz Tansey, Senior Manager at Covering Kids and Families; and Jodi Walker, Founder/Executive Director of Kids at Their Best. Our guests provide an overview of how Medicaid enrollment policies have changed since the pandemic and share their knowledge and perspectives on the upcoming Medicaid continuous eligibility unwind. Erin, Liz, and Jodi also explain why kids are likely to be disproportionately impacted when these policies begin to unwind, and share solutions being brought forward to help keep Coloradans enrolled in Medicaid. These proposals include various outreach efforts across the state and a new bill that could change enrollment policies in the long term. Listen now. 

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About Children's Campaign

The Colorado Children’s Campaign is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy organization committed since 1985 to realizing every chance for every child in Colorado. We advocate for the development and implementation of data-driven public policies that improve child wellbeing in health, education and early childhood. We do this by providing Coloradans with trusted data and research on child wellbeing and organizing an extensive state-wide network of dedicated child advocates. For more information, please visit www.coloradokids.org.