HIP Enrollment, Closed

INDIANA, (WOWO): The state has closed enrollment in the Healthy Indiana insurance plan for the rest of the year.

The plan for uninsured, low-income Hoosiers is funded by state cigarette taxes, and enrollment has always been capped based on how much money is available. Family and Social Services Administration spokesman Jim Gavin says the state estimated last year it would reach capacity for 2013 around midyear, with an average enrollment of 45-thousand people.

The time estimate proved correct, but Gavin says HIP actually has about 52-thousand beneficiaries enrolled, since many people didn't sign up until spring or summer.

Gavin says pending applications will still be processed normally, but any further applications will be denied unless there's an unexpected increase in capacity.

The state has asked the federal government to authorize an expansion of HIP which would make the program a stand-in for Medicaid and create room for 350-thousand more enrollments, with federal funding and an agreed-on subsidy from Indiana hospitals covering the increased cost.