Ind. Gov. & House fight over healthcare coverage expansion

Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., speaks to the media while entering a fund raising event for Marion Republican county city-county council candidates in Indianapolis, Friday, May 6, 2011. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

February 21, 2013 2:19:59 PM PST
Gov. Mike Pence and Indiana House lawmakers are fighting over how to expand healthcare coverage for roughly 400,000 Indiana residents .

House Public Health Chairman Ed Clere says that lawmakers and governor Mike Pence's office are still deciding whether the Healthy Indiana Plan's savings accounts can be successfully expanded from covering 40,000 residents to more than 400,000.

House Republicans debated the issue Thursday afternoon in their daily caucus meeting.

Pence filed a waiver with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services last week seeking to use HIP as the vehicle for the Medicaid expansion. But lawmakers are pushing a pair of proposals with minor variations to qualify for the federal expansion.

The Indiana Hospital Association estimates the state could miss out on $10.5 billion in federal aid without a Medicaid expansion.