Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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The lowdown...

  • HIP health insurance refers to several different state government administered health insurance plans
  • HIP is not a type of health insurance like HMO or PPO
  • If you cannot get on one of these HIP plans, you can always check out health insurance quotes online and find your own plan

Many people who have heard the term HIP health insurance wonder what it means. As with many aspects of the health insurance world, there is not a simple answer. The definition changes depending on context, and many people misunderstand HIP plans.

Many people think it is a type of health insurance plan, but the term “HIP” can refer to several different government organizations that offer health insurance.

These organizations are run by different states, so you can only qualify for an insurance policy through them if you are resident of one of those states. These plans are usually free or almost free, but the coverage is not as extensive and not as many healthcare providers accept them.

Find your own health coverage today by comparing free quotes using your zip code on our site!

What does HIP stand for in health insurance?


HIP simply stands for health insurance plan. It is not a type of plan like a PPO or HMO. The acronym is most commonly used to refer to health insurance plans offered by state governments. There aren’t any other common acronyms within the health insurance terminology that use the same letters, so it should be fairly straightforward now that you know what HIP stands for.

If you are searching for more information on the health insurance plans offered by state governments, you may want to use the full term “health insurance plans” instead of the acronym. This is because the search results may be filled with information about hip treatments rather than health insurance plans.

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Different Government Plans Called “HIP Plans”

There are three different state-government-sponsored health insurance plans referred to as HIP plans. These include the Health Insurance Plan of New Jersey, the Health Insurance Plan of New York, and the Healthy Indiana Plan.

The three U.S. state HIP plans are structured as HMOs, which stands for “health maintenance organizations”.

The Health Insurance Plan of New Jersey is no longer active. It went bankrupt in the late 90s and was not replaced despite proposals to reinstate it. The Health Insurance Plan of New York and Healthy Indiana Plan are still going.

The Health Insurance Plan of New Jersey


The Health Insurance Plan of New Jersey was an HMO that served many residents of the Garden State. It operated during the 80s and early 90s. It began to experience financial problems around 1997 and went out of business in 1999.

The collapse of the New Jersey HIP left many residents uninsured. There hasn’t been a similar organization in New Jersey since then, and there are no proposals on the table to create another organization.

The Health Insurance Plan of New York


The Health Insurance Plan of New York is similar to the Health Insurance Plan of New Jersey, except it is still active. Millions of people in the New York State area are on this plan. It looks to be managed well, and there are no signs of the sort of trouble that plagued the New Jersey Health Plan.

People on The Health Insurance Plan of New York are generally happy with their coverage, and many have chosen this plan over their other health insurance options. Hopefully, this plan will avoid the end that befell the New Jersey Health Insurance Plan.

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The Healthy Indiana Plan

The Healthy Indiana Plan is a little bit different than the New York plan or the New Jersey plan. The Healthy Indiana Plan was created by the governor of the state to provide health insurance for the many workers who had been laid off from their manufacturing and industrial jobs and lost their health insurance. It is now expanded to cover more people, but many of the people on the policy were the original policy holders.

The Healthy Indiana Plan is not free, but it is heavily discounted as compared to traditional private insurance plans.

The Healthy Indiana Plan is not free, but it is heavily discounted as compared to traditional private insurance plans.

How to Enroll in a State HIP


As the New Jersey Plan is defunct, you can only get on the New York or Indiana plans. Obviously, you can only get on one of these plans if you live in that state. This may be a little disheartening for people who didn’t know that HIP plans referred to plans that existed for two specific states.

However, people who are not in New York and Indiana can still easily find their own affordable health insurance policy by comparing health coverage quotes online. In fact, this may actually be easier than trying to qualify for a government health insurance plan.

Government Plans vs. Private Plans

Many people are split on whether government plans are better than private plans or not. The general consensus is that private plans are better if you can afford them.

People who cannot afford private plans are better served by free or nearly free government plans. These plans often have widespread coverage for very low cost, but many providers will not accept them.

Some of the providers that do accept government plans are not as reputable or as well respected as providers that accept private plans. Para plans are surely more expensive, but if you can afford them you can usually get a higher standard of Care at more healthcare providers.

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How to Get a Plan if You Are Not in One of These States


If you’re not in one of these states, you may still be in a state that offers a government plan. However, you may want to compare health insurance quotes online and try to get a private plan for yourself. Keep in mind that the Affordable Care Act states that anybody making under a certain number a year in income can get significant tax credits to pay for a private plan.

In some cases, these tax credits may be enough to pay the whole monthly premium. If not, they will almost certainly cover the majority of the premium.

What are your options for finding health insurance?


In conclusion, HIP health insurance is not a type of plan, but simply an acronym that refers to a couple of different state-government-administered health plans. If you do not live in New York or Indiana, you will not be able to get on one of these plans. However, you may be able to get on another government plan or get your own plan by comparing health insurance quotes online.

Either way, there are plenty of options available for someone seeking in for a health insurance plan in this day and age. Enter your zip code below to compare free health insurance quotes in your area!