Monday October 14, 2019
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Kentucky’s Innovative, Transformative Plan to Improve Health Outcomes Passes Important Milestone

CMS acknowledges completed submission of Medicaid waiver; opens thirty day federal comment period

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services acknowledged the completed submission of the Section 1115 demonstration waiver known as Kentucky HEALTH (Helping to Engage and Achieve Long Term Health).

This innovative and common sense approach waiver will put Kentuckians on a path to better health outcomes, ensure long term sustainability of the Medicaid program and familiarize members with commercial insurance and prepare them for self-sufficiency.

“We are pleased that our Kentucky HEALTH plan has achieved this important milestone and we look forward to the public input that will be received over the next thirty days,” said Gov. Matt Bevin. “Kentucky HEALTH will allow us to provide Medicaid coverage that ensures better health outcomes for Kentuckians in a fiscally responsible manner. Without it, there will be no expanded Medicaid in Kentucky, so we look forward to working with CMS to ensure this coverage continues.”

There will now be a 30-day federal comment period similar to the public comment period Kentucky recently conducted. After that time, the Medicaid statute provides full authority for the Secretary of HHS to approve the waiver at any time.

Beginning next year, Kentucky taxpayers must begin paying a portion of Medicaid expansion costs for the first time. The prior administration unilaterally implemented Medicaid expansion without a plan to pay the additional $1.2 billion in new state spending for fiscal years 2017 through 2021 necessary for the program. Kentucky HEALTH will help improve health outcomes while ensuring the long term viability of the Medicaid program.

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