INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – When
it comes to access to quality health care, no Hoosier deserves to fall through
gaps in the state’s coverage system. This is why the Indiana Hospital
Association urges the federal CMS agency to quickly approve the new HIP 2.0
Healthy Indiana Plan, that was just submitted by Governor Mike Pence. The
plan would provide health care coverage for up to 350,000 residents of
Indiana who fall in the coverage gap, just outside the income requirements to
enroll in Medicaid and below the level to qualify for ACA tax credits.
“We are encouraged to
see the final HIP 2.0 plan submitted for federal approval, and
hopeful about what expanded health care access will mean to the
people of our state,” said Doug Leonard, president of Indiana Hospital
Association. “The approval of this program would mean 350,000
Hoosiers who would normally just go without will get vital
preventive care. It means they will be able to go to bed at night,
knowing they are covered if they get sick or have an accident. It
means our hospitals will see fewer indigent patients, and
patients who let illnesses linger until they become complex emergency
room cases. It means our members will be able to focus
on getting patients the kind of preventive, common-sense care that will help
contain costs. This is a monumental step forward for the health of
the state of Indiana,” Leonard said.
As proposed, there
are three plans under the HIP 2.0 package: HIP Link, HIP Plus and HIP Basic.
HIP 2.0 is better for health care providers than Medicaid, Leonard
said, because the reimbursements rates for physicians are higher, making the
program more sustainable and increasing access. In addition, HIP 2.0 eliminates
the waiting lists under the original plan and provides more essential services
such as maternity care and mental health services.
IHA members will
provide support for HIP 2.0 through an existing provider fee program. This fee,
coupled with additional tobacco tax revenue dedicated to the current HIP program,
will help the state qualify for billions in federal matching dollars. “We are
very happy to see Indiana tap into this critical source of funding and use it
to get health care to the Hoosiers who need it most,” Leonard said.
The new plan will provide better reimbursement to Indiana hospitals,
which are struggling to provide as much as $3 billion in uncompensated
care every year.
According to IHA and
its Expand Indiana campaign on coverage expansion:
- Approximately 860,000 Hoosiers, or 14 percent of the population, are uninsured.
- As many as 300,000 Indiana residents in low-paying jobs do not earn enough to qualify for tax credits and subsidies through the Health Insurance marketplace. However, they earn too much income to qualify for Indiana’s existing health care programs for the poor.
- If coverage expansion is approved, the average family could save as much as $677 in premiums per year as health insurance premium increases will be reduced.
HIP 2.0 will help
Indiana’s employers avoid between $23 to $24 million in federal “shared responsibility”
tax penalties required of states who opt out of participation. (Source: Jackson
Hewitt Tax Service, Inc.)
To learn more about
Expand Indiana, visit ExpandINCoverage.org.
In 2013, Indiana