At Governor Holcomb’s press conference this afternoon, FSSA Secretary Jennifer Sullivan, M.D., M.P.H., offered some important updates on several program and policy changes that our office is working on. We wanted you to know about these and where you can find more information.
HIP Workforce Bridge – Late last week, the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approved the “HIP Workforce Bridge” program we introduced to you and proposed last year. This program will establish a unique transitional phase for Healthy Indiana Plan members as they return to the workforce and to employer insurance or other health coverage.
HIP Workforce Bridge will allow thousands of outgoing HIP participants to continue to use up to $1,000 from their POWER accounts for up to 12 months to pay premiums, deductibles, copayments and coinsurance during their transition to commercial coverage. This assistance will be offered to individuals as soon as they become ineligible for HIP due to earning higher incomes. Normally, HIP members lose the ability to use these funds as soon as they are no longer enrolled in the program, and unlike traditional health savings accounts, POWER accounts do not stay with the enrollee if they move to private insurance.
Indiana becomes the first state to establish such an innovative approach to eliminating the gap in health coverage that can prevent HIP members from pursuing meaningful employment.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, FSSA is not currently disenrolling members of any health coverage program for any reason. HIP Workforce Bridge will be in place to support members immediately once the governor’s executive order expires.
For more information about HIP Workforce Bridge, please read Governor Holcomb’s press release.
SNAP online purchasing – Indiana SNAP recipients may now use their Hoosier Works EBT cards to purchase groceries online for pickup or delivery at two approved retailers – Amazon and Walmart. SNAP participants are automatically eligible to participate in this program and do not need to apply. The availability of this service is intended to help remove barriers and provide safety and convenience benefits for Hoosier SNAP recipients – particularly those who are most at risk for COVID-19 infection and those who are homebound.
Details of this program are available here.
It is important to note that any delivery fees that may apply to the online purchase may not be paid with SNAP benefits. If SNAP recipients have any problems using their card for ordering, they should call the number on the back of their Hoosier Works EBT card for customer service.
You can also read more about SNAP online purchasing in our press release.