The TV host took to Instagram to wish the world a happy new year and share a cute family photo featuring himself, his wife Molly McNearney and their two little kids — William “Billy” John, 8 months, and 3-year-old Jane — chilling out in bed together.
“Hi, I’m Jimmy and this is Billy. I was out this week because this guy had heart surgery,” he introduced to the audience before thanking his guest hosts for filling in for him while he was out. When he got emotional thinking about his son’s health, Kimmel tried to laugh it off. “Daddy cries on TV but Billy doesn’t.”
“We also want to thank the very bright and talented doctors and nurses at Children’s Hospital who treated Billy, and not just Billy, and many kids with so much care and compassion … children from every income level whose health is especially threatened right now because of something you probably never heard of,” he said, holding back tears. “It’s called CHIP [Children’s Health Insurance Program].”
CHIP helps families who make too much money to qualify for Medicaid but can’t get coverage through their jobs, according to Kimmel. He told the audience that CHIP may be cut off for some families because funding has not been approved by Congress.
“Billy’s doing great by the way. He has one more surgery,” Kimmel said. “They say he’s probably on track to win at least a bronze medal in the Olympics in 2036.”
Billy was born with a heart defect in April and underwent his first surgery at three days old. Kimmel opened up about his son’s health just days after bringing him home for the first time.
“He will have another surgery in three to six months,” Kimmel said at the time. “And, a third, hopefully non-invasive surgery in the future.”