Governor Matt Bevin has announced a plan to rebuild the state’s Medicaid system. Bevin has plans to apply for a 1115 waiver and if approved, would allow the state government to create its own Medicaid program.
Bevin’s plan is called “Helping to Engage and Achieve Long Term Health” (HEALTH). A complete draft of the proposal is available online. During the Affordable Care Act implementation, the state’s Medicaid program was expanded and saw participation increase by more than 60%. Starting next year, Kentucky tax payers will have to start paying for a portion of that expansion, and the expected cost is $1.2 billion over the next five years. If the HEALTH plan is approved, the plan is expected to save taxpayers over $2 billion.
It estimated that nearly 1.2 million Kentuckians will be transitioned into the new HEALTH plan. The plan is different from traditional Medicaid, it is targeted for individuals that were added in the expansion, by requiring a monthly premium, $1 – $15, depending on income. The monthly payments will be in place of a co-payment when seeking care. For individuals that are 100% or more above the federal poverty level, after two years, the premiums will increase incrementally, to help transition those individuals into private insurance. There will be added incentives to help purchase additional coverage, such as dental and vision can be added for smoking cessation and weight loss.There will not be a work requirement, but able-bodied adults are expected to participate in activities, such as education, community service, or job skills training, to maintain eligibility. Individuals that would have been eligible for Medicaid prior to the ACA implementation will still be eligible for standard Medicaid coverage.
Comments on the proposal are being accepted and can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org mailed to :
Commissioner Stephen Miller, Department for Medicaid Services, 275 E. Main Street, Frankfort, KY 40621
There will also be three formal, public hearings throughout the state:
Comments must be received by July 22, end of the day. After the comment period has been closed, all comments will be reviewed an revisions may be made before submitting the waiver proposal.