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Back in June,  the IBJ reported how the Pence administration was bumping heads with the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS) over HIP 2.0, the state’s alternative to traditional Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

The two sides could not agree on how the program should be evaluated.

My how things have changed.

President-elect Donald Trump is naming Seema Verma as the new head of CMS.  

Verma is the architect of the Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP), the nation’s first consumer directed Medicaid program under Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana and then Governor Mike Pence’s HIP 2.0 waiver proposal.

Since its inception, the program has enrolled more than 400,000 low-income Hoosiers.

Also, according to a recent study, nearly 7 out of 10 first-year members participated in the HIP Plus program, meaning they chose to make contributions into their POWER Accounts (health savings-like accounts). More than 62 percent of members whose incomes were at or below the federal poverty level participated in HIP Plus. Forty percent of HIP Plus members say they check the balance of their POWER Account each month.   The program also offers a Gateway to Work program, which connects Hoosiers to workforce training programs and potential employers.

There were serious questions about whether HIP 2.0 would survive in a Hillary Clinton administration.   Now with new management in charge, it looks like the program will not only survive, but become a model for the rest of the country as the new Congress looks to replace the Affordable Care Act.