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Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

Download/Print CHIP Information Pamphlet
Health insurance is a benefit every Mississippi family needs - especially for their children. But for many working families, the cost of health insurance has simply been beyond their means - until now.

Through Mississippi Health Benefits, there are two health insurance options that cover children: the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Medicaid.

Applications for Mississippi Health Benefits are available by mail and at many locations that serve children's needs like your Medicaid Regional Offices, local health departments, community  health centers, rural health clinics, Head Start centers, public schools, and some hospitals and private clinics.

Families are urged to apply to see if their children are eligible for either program.

Applications for Medicaid and/or CHIP require an in-person interview by the parent or caretaker.  The Regional Office will determine the appropriate program for each child.


It's possible that one child in a family may qualify for Medicaid while another may qualify for CHIP. Eligibility is based on household income, the age of each child and the insured status of each child.


It is important to apply for health benefits before your children become ill. Benefits under CHIP are not retroactive. CHIP coverage generally can begin no earlier than the month following the month of application. It can begin later, so it is important to apply early.

If a child has other insurance health coverage, Medicaid eligibility is not affected. However, only uninsured children can qualify for CHIP.

The income guidelines below can help determine eligibility for CHIP and Medicaid.

Both CHIP and Medicaid cover a wide range of services and have many user friendly features. Services include:  health screenings (including vision and hearing exams; preventive health care such as immunizations; inpatient and outpatient hospital care; doctor's or clinic visits for well-child check ups and sick-child care; lab services; prescription medications; eyeglasses and hearing aids; dental care; and mental health services. There are no exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

Bring or mail your completed Mississippi Health Benefits application form along with the required verification mentioned above to your Medicaid Regional Office. An Interview will be held or scheduled for you.

To apply for Mississippi Health Benefits an in-person interview is required along with:
  • Proof of family income
  • Proof of citizenship or eligible immigrant status for each child applying. (For US citizens, we will attempt to verify citizenship using the Social Security Number.)
  • Social Security numbers for each person applying
Eligibility is continuous for one year for children under age 19. There are no premiums or deductibles, although there may be a small co-payment for some services for higher-income families on CHIP.
Click Here for CHIP Family/Size Eligibility Guidelines

To find out more about Health Benefits for children call 1-877-KIDS-NOW
(1-877-543-7669)
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telephone:  601-359-6050 or toll free: 1-800-421-2408