Exploring the options for auto-enrollment for children in SCHIP and Medicaid

This project will investigate auto-enrollment strategies that can reach the bulk of remaining uninsured children who qualify for Medicaid or SCHIP. Auto-enrollment has accomplished remarkable results with other public and private benefit programs, but its use for children's health coverage has been limited to date. According to the most recent estimates available from the Census Bureau, nearly 9 million children lacked health coverage in 2005. While a majority of these children qualified for Medicaid or SCHIP, they were not enrolled. Most states have undertaken major outreach campaigns and efforts to simplify application and renewal procedures. Such measures could help many children, particularly in the states that have lagged behind their peers, but as a nation we may be reaching the point of diminishing returns. To take a quantum leap forward in covering America's children, qualitatively different strategies are needed. This project will engage in three activities to move toward applying auto-enrollment strategies to the Medicaid and SCHIP programs for children's coverage: (1) drafting a policy options paper to describe how states can implement and evaluate such strategies; (2) convening leading state officials from across the country to assess the feasibility of this approach and its potential importance to covering uninsured children; and (3) finalizing the options paper, communicating the results to state-level policy-makers, stakeholders, and advocates. The project will help to inform the Foundation's Coverage Team's objective of maximizing enrollment for children under SCHIP and Medicaid and contribute to any potential demonstration projects in this area.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $107,855.00

Awarded on: 7/17/2007

Time frame: 8/1/2007 - 3/31/2009

Grant Number: 60115


Urban Institute

2100 M Street, N.W.
Washington, 20037-1207


Stanley Dorn
Project Director