Gov. Pence gets federal government approval for Medicaid alternative

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Jan. 27, 2014)-- After months of negotiations with the federal government, Tuesday morning Indiana Gov. Mike Pence announced the state received a waiver from the Department of Health and Human Services to expand the Healthy Indiana Plan, known as HIP 2.0.

Indiana residents can begin applying today. Coverage will begin February 1.

HIP 2.0 Quick Facts

Administration officials said Tuesday the plan will cover 350,000 Hoosiers who don't qualify for Medicare or the Affordable Care Act. The program will also end traditional Medicaid for an estimated 120,000 non-disabled adults, moving them to the HIP 2.0 plan.

Administration officials say HIP 2.0 will be funded through a combination of the cigarette tax and contributions from hospitals.

The governor credited "strong bipartisan support" from Washington to Indiana for the decision.

"HIP 2.0 is not intended to be a long-term entitlement program," said Gov. Pence in a press conference Tuesday. "It's intended to be a safety net."

The governor stressed the Healthy Indiana Plan will require no new spending or taxes.

“The expanded and updated HIP 2.0 is based on a program that has been serving 60,000 low-income Hoosiers in our state for seven years,” said Governor Pence. “It is a proven model for Medicaid reform across the nation.”

HIP 2.0 participants are required to contribute to a POWER account, which they manage like a health savings account and are rewarded for using preventive care. Consequences for non-payment range from mandatory co-pays for services to loss of coverage. In addition, the plan includes a co-pay for emergency room use, designed to encourage appropriate use of the emergency room.

With this approval, Indiana will end traditional Medicaid for all non-disabled Hoosiers between 19 and 64 and will continue to offer the first-ever consumer-driven health care plan for a low-income population.

“Since the beginning of my administration, we have worked hard to ensure that low-income Hoosiers have access to a health care plan that empowers them to take charge of their health and prepares them to move to private insurance as they improve their lives,” said the governor. “This has been a long process, but real reform takes work.”

For information on how to enroll in the Healthy Indiana Plan, visit www.HIP.IN.gov or call 1-877-GET-HIP-9.

HIP by numbers

 

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