Officials Make Changes to Healthy Indiana Plan Used by Many Hoosiers

February 5, 2018

 

Officials extend the Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) for three years giving affordable care to Hoosiers.

According to The Indiana Hospital Association (IHA), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have renewed the HIP program for three additional years.

According to the Hospital Association, they are very appreciative to Governor Holcomb and FSSA Secretary Dr. Jennifer Walthall for their commitment to maintaining this affordable option for health care coverage.

Holcomb joined U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar at Sidney & Lois Eskenazi Hospital to announce the approval.

HIP advocates believe it has been a tremendous success and its continuation will lead to significant improvements in the health of the entire state.

The HIP plan was created in 2007 under Gov. Mitch Daniels and was expanded in 2015 by then Gov. Mike Pence with a federal waiver to implement HIP as an alternative to traditional Medicaid expansion.

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb

Approximately 400,00 low income Hoosiers now have access to preventative care which helps bend the long-term cost curve. IHA and its member hospitals look forward to quickly ramping up collaborative efforts with the State of Indiana to enroll more Hoosiers in this program.

In addition to continuing HIP for nearly three years and making several administrative adjustments to help members, federal approval allows Indiana to enhance HIP with up to $80 million in annual funding to support efforts to attack the opioid epidemic.

According to the Governor’s website, Indiana will now expand access to a range of addiction treatment options—inpatient, outpatient and residential—for both HIP and Medicaid members to help ensure Hoosiers get the specific treatment needed for their disease.

The approval also adds provisions that connect HIP members to available jobs or education opportunities.

“A decade after it launched, Indiana’s HIP program has become the national model for a state-led, consumer-driven healthcare program that meets citizens’ needs, provides choices and improves lives,” Holcomb said. “This approval continues coverage for hundreds of thousands of Hoosiers and unlocks funding to expand resources to help people struggling with addiction.”

“The approval is the result of the hard work of Gov. Holcomb, his team and our team at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and serves as a testament to Indiana’s ongoing commitment to improving the lives of its Medicaid beneficiaries,” said Secretary Azar. “We look forward to collaborating with Indiana on this next evolution of HIP, which serves as another example of the Trump Administration’s support of state-led efforts and innovative reforms to make our HHS programs really work for Americans.”

Based on input from Hoosiers who rely on HIP, the state asked for changes to Indiana’s HIP waiver to make it easier for members and health care providers to effectively use the program.

The waiver also allows Indiana to expand its existing Gateway to Work initiative to connect eligible members to job training, education and community engagement activities.

The Gateway to Work initiative formalizes connections between HIP members and Indiana employers to help fill thousands of available jobs in high-demand industry sectors.

“HIP is a program built with Hoosiers in mind and has improved lives over the past decade, including the 75 percent of HIP members who receive preventative care to avoid major, costly health conditions.” said Walthall.

IHA is a nonprofit organization that serves as the professional trade association for more than 170 Hoosier hospitals.

Their mission statement is to “provide leadership, representation and services in the common best interests of its members as they promote the improvement of community health status.

According to their press release, IHA’s  primary responsibility is to “represent the interests of hospitals in matters of public policy and provide members with education, communications and data collection services.

To learn more about IHA, visit IHAconnect.org  and to Learn more about the state’s program and approval at www.HIP.in.gov.