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Congress reauthorizes CHIP, ADA thanks dentists for their grassroots efforts

January 23, 2018

By Jennifer Garvin

Washington — Congress has reauthorized the Children’s Health Insurance Program for six years as part of a stopgap spending bill that will keep the government running until Feb. 8.

The bill, which was signed into law Jan. 22 by President Donald J. Trump, provides CHIP with $21.5 billion in funding for fiscal year 2018 and increases that funding to $25.9 billion by 2023.

“ADA members have done it again. Thanks in large part to our persistence and the strength of our collective voice, Congress reauthorized the Children's Health Insurance Program, which provides much needed oral health services to nearly 9 million children and pregnant women,” said Dr. Joseph P. Crowley, ADA president, in a statement thanking ADA members. “Along with other medical care, CHIP provides dental health coverage for children whose families don't qualify for Medicaid but struggle to afford other coverage. We hope that the families that experienced needless anxiety from the delayed funding are relieved that this extension will carry through the next six years.”

The bill also suspended the 2.3 percent excise tax on the sale of medical devices for two years and delayed the so-called Cadillac tax, a 40 percent tax on high-cost, employer-sponsored insurance.

The ADA will continue to advocate for the future funding of community health centers and the National Health Service Corps.

In a Jan. 23 email, Dr. David Watson, the American Dental Association Political Action Committee’s grassroots chair, thanked members for using the ADA’s Engage system to reach out to legislators on these issues.

“With your help in the coming weeks we will continue to push Congress to ensure funding for community health centers and the National Health Service Corps. Thank you for all you do,” Dr. Watson wrote.

Follow all of the ADA’s advocacy efforts at