Epilepsy Foundation Applauds Passage of Long-term Funding for Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

8.9 Million Children Who Rely on CHIP will Keep Coverage with Six-year Funding Extension
Thursday, January 25, 2018

January 25, 2018, Washington, D.C. -

On Monday, January 22, 2018, Congress passed and the President signed a continuing resolution that included a six-year reauthorization for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The Epilepsy Foundation applauds congressional action on a multi-year reauthorization that reflects longstanding bipartisan support for this critical program. CHIP provides coverage for 8.9 million American children, including 2 million children with chronic conditions like epilepsy.

CHIP funding ran out on September 30th at the end of fiscal year 2017. As states scrambled to keep the program running, many families who rely on CHIP faced uncertainty and received notices letting them know their children’s coverage would soon come to an end.

“The Epilepsy Foundation has advocated for a multi-year extension since early 2017, and we are grateful that Congress has reauthorized CHIP to ensure children can continue to access quality, affordable care,” said Phil Gattone, president & CEO of the Epilepsy Foundation. “This is great news for millions of children who rely on CHIP and for their families, including many children living with epilepsy.”

“Our family relies on CHIP to ensure our son Nicholas, who lives with epilepsy and cerebral palsy since he was six months old, has access to the quality care he needs,” said Bill Stratton from Connecticut. “We received notice that Nicholas’ coverage would end January 31, 2018, and we didn’t know how we would be able to make ends meet. Before CHIP we struggled to keep up with medical bills due to Nicholas’ complex needs.”

CHIP provides quality, low-cost health insurance to children from low- income families, as well as children from middle-income families with complex chronic conditions and disabilities like epilepsy. The program is primarily funded by the federal government and administered by states. Learn more about CHIP at advocacy.epilepsy.com/CHIP.


About Epilepsy

When a person has two unprovoked seizures or one unprovoked seizure with the likelihood of more, they are considered to have epilepsy. (An unprovoked seizure is one that occurs for no known reason.) Epilepsy affects more than 3.4 million people in the U.S. and 65 million worldwide. This year, another 150,000 people will be diagnosed with epilepsy. Despite all available treatments, at least 3 out of 10 people with epilepsy continue to experience uncontrolled seizures while many more experience less than optimal seizure control.

About the Epilepsy Foundation

The Epilepsy Foundation, a national non-profit with more than 50 local organizations throughout the U.S., has led the fight against seizures since 1968. The Foundation is an unwavering ally for individuals and families impacted by epilepsy and seizures. The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is: to lead the fight to overcome the challenges of living with epilepsy and to accelerate therapies to stop seizures, find cures, and save lives. The Foundation works to ensure that people with seizures have the opportunity to live their lives to their fullest potential. For additional information, please visit epilepsy.com.

“Like” the Epilepsy Foundation on Facebook at facebook.com/epilepsyfoundationofamerica. Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/epilepsyfdn.

Contact Name: 
Beatriz Duque Long
Contact Phone: 
(301) 918-3764
Contact Email: 

Our Mission

The mission of the Epilepsy Foundation is to lead the fight to overcome the challenges of living with epilepsy and to accelerate therapies to stop seizures, find cures, and save lives.

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