Last week President-elect Trump tapped Seema Verma, a consultant to Mike Pence who negotiated Indiana’s Medicaid provisions, to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
While it’s not clear what she has planned for Medicare, her article ‘Healthy Indiana 2.0 Is Challenging Medicaid Norms’ outlines the Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP), Indiana’s consumer-driven approach to Medicaid reform. The article describes the heart of the plan as:
”In line with commercial market consumer-driven plans, HIP members receive a $2,500 deductible health plan (HDHP) paired with a $2,500 “POWER” account, similar to a health savings account (HSA). The POWER account is HIP’s paramount feature. It acts as both a payment mechanism and a terminal through which HIP’s incentive structure flows. Members use the POWER account to pay for health care services until the deductible amount is met, at which point the HDHP becomes solely responsible for paying any further claims. Preventive services are provided outside the deductible and members do not face any barriers to seeking these services.”
We don’t yet know what changes are coming for the healthcare industry, but it is clear that the Trump administration will seek to create new health insurance systems that grant states far more autonomy and support consumer-driven models.