On Thursday, March 27, 2014, after nearly 20 months of analysis, discussion and debate, Governor Hassan signed into law SB 413, creating the New Hampshire Health Protection Program to extend affordable health insurance to low-income Granite Staters.
SB 413 was sponsored by Senators Chuck Morse, Sylvia Larsen, Jeb Bradley, Peggy Gilmour, Bob Odell, and Lou D’Allesandro. This legislation represents a pragmatic, bipartisan effort to find common ground to address the specific needs and priorities of New Hampshire.
The New Hampshire Health Protection Program uses three approaches to extend affordable health insurance to low-income adults: the Health Insurance Premium Program (HIPP), the Bridge to Marketplace Premium Assistance Program (Bridge), and the Marketplace Premium Assistance Program (Premium Assistance).
The enactment of this legislation makes New Hampshire the 26th state to leverage federal Medicaid dollars, available through the Affordable Care Act, to expand access to affordable health insurance in New Hampshire. The legislation is projected to cover as many as 50,000 adults and bring as much as $2.4 billion into the New Hampshire economy over the next decade.
While the road to enactment was long, the implementation of the main elements of this program is just beginning and will require many more months of work. As we start down the path toward implementation, NHFPI has created a timeline to help break down the next steps and outline the likely chronology of the process going forward. NHFPI will continue to monitor the development and implementation of the New Hampshire Health Protection Program and we’ll continue to publish updates along the way.