Children's Health Insurance - E-News from Rhode Island KIDS COUNT
October 17, 2017
Urgent Ongoing Advocacy Needed on CHIP

According to the 2016 Census Bureau's American Community Survey, 97.8% of Rhode Island children have health insurance coverage and Rhode Island is ranked third best in the nation. RIte Care, Rhode Island's high-quality Medicaid/CHIP managed care health insurance program, continues to provide many low-income children and families in our state with affordable, comprehensive health coverage. 

The Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provides important funding and coverage to 27,000 children in the RIte Care program and 9 million children in the United States. Congressional action is urgently needed to extend CHIP funding which expired on September 30th. Without Congressional action, Rhode Island CHIP funds will expire by May 2018 and other states may run out of funding even sooner. 

Rhode Island KIDS COUNT continues to strongly advocate for a swift 5 year extension of CHIP. Rhode Island's Congressional delegation is providing key leadership to urge that Congress extend CHIP right away. Raise your voice to urge Congress to act now to extend this critical health insurance program that has been instrumental in achieving record numbers of US children with health insurance coverage - 95% of US children are now insured. 
To learn more about this issue, please check out Georgetown's Center for Children and Families' factsheet on RI/CHIP and their recent CHIP update, as well as recent articles from Providence Business News and the Providence Journal.
Register Today! Our Annual Celebration of Children's Health Luncheon

Rhode Island KIDS COUNT invites you to attend our Annual Celebration of Children's Health Luncheon & Presentation of Covering Kids Awards on Monday, November 6, 2017, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. at The Providence Marriott (Charles and Orms Streets).  Registration is required .
New Issue Brief! Preventing Youth Tobacco Use in RI

Preventing Youth Tobacco Use in Rhode Island presents detailed rates of youth cigarette, tobacco product, and e-cigarette use in Rhode Island, risk factors for youth tobacco and e-cigarette use, an overview of tobacco control programs and policies, as well as recommendations for eliminating youth tobacco use and use of new products such as e-cigarettes. 

Please also see the event presentation, media release, and event pictures.
Rhode Island Age One Dental Champions
The Rhode Island Department of Health's Oral Health Program has created the following Age One Dental Champion Directory, to easily find dental providers who have indicated that they work with very young children! 

The Rhode Island Department of Health does not endorse specific dental providers - the purpose of this directory is to list dentists that accept patients for the age one dental visit. All dentists are licensed with the state of Rhode Island and volunteered to be an Age One Champion. 

If you are a Rhode Island dental provider who would like to be included, please email Rhode Island KIDS COUNT Communications Manager Katy Chu at
RIte Care/Medicaid Open Enrollment
Families, children, and individuals who are currently enrolled in a RIte Care/Medicaid managed care health plan now have the opportunity to change plans, if they so choose. Rhode Island Medicaid is holding an Open Enrollment period from September 1 through October 31, 2017. Currently enrolled members can change their plan selection during this time. 

The three health plan choices are Neighborhood Health Plan of RI, Tufts Health Plan, or UnitedHealthcare Community Plan. If a member wants to stay with their current plan, no action is required. To change plans, members can complete a simple form that comes with their mailed Open Enrollment letter or call HealthSource RI at 1-855-840-4774. 

To learn more about the Medicaid Open Enrollment period, member mailings, and answers to FAQs, please visit the Executive Office Health and Human Services website. Please note that children's dental benefits provided by RIte Smiles through UnitedHealthcare will stay the same if a member picks a new health plan.