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Verma Brings Medicaid Experience, Could Impact Expansion

Seema Verma is Donald Trump's pick for the head of Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Seema Verma is a name that may be familiar to many Hoosiers. As a healthcare consultant, Verma worked on the Healthy Indiana Plan.

The plan, known as HIP 2.0, is a localized expansion of Medicaid. It rolled out as a part of the Affordable Care Act.

Kosali Simon, professor at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, says that many conservative states chose not to enact their own local expansion of Medicaid.

Simon says it’s hard to tell how Verma’s role will change the way the Medicaid expansion currently stands.

"Maybe this would encourage other states that haven’t expanded Medicaid already to put forward waiver plans — proposals to the government to say, we’ll do the MedicaAid expansion, but under these terms. We’ll craft it slightly different. We’ll have more of these personal responsibility elements in it," Simon says.

The President of the Indiana Hospital Association released a statement saying Verma "deeply understands the critical importance to those served by programs like Medicare and Medicaid, and is a superb choice to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services."

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