Affordable Care: when does CHIP end and coverage for Mom

My husband has insurance through his job. My kids have Healthy Kids Insurance, though one is 18 years old. I do not have insurance. Will I be the only one who needs an insurance plan?  Also will Healthy Kids still be in effect and till what age?

Healthy Mom

Dear Healthy Mom,

I’m guessing that “Healthy Kids Insurance” is your state’s Medicaid CHIP plan. If so, the 18-year-old’s coverage will end when he/she turns 19. (If it is not CHIP but is Medicaid, then your state may have programs that offer coverage past age 19.)

Depending upon what state you live in, you may qualify for Medicaid as a parent of a Medicaid-eligible child. See the Kaiser Family Foundation’s List of Medicaid Expansion States.

If you do not qualify for Medicaid AND your husband’s employer does not offer coverage to spouses, then you can go to the health insurance marketplace to buy insurance and get government subsidies to help pay for it. If your husband’s employer does cover spouses, then you cannot get government help to buy a plan on the marketplace.

This is assuming that your husband’s employer’s plan meets other health reform standards: it cannot cost more than 9.5% of his income to cover himself, and it has to cover 60% of average health expenses. Your husband should have received a notice from his employer about whether the plan meets the standards.

Linda Riddell

About Linda Riddell

A published author and health policy analyst with 25 years’ experience, Linda Riddell's goal is to alleviate the widespread ailment of not knowing what your health plan can do for you.