FRANKFORT, Ky. — kynect, the state-based health insurance exchange, will reopen Nov. 1, 2021, to provide Kentuckians easier access to health coverage and other benefits.
The move, approved recently by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), allows Kentuckians to access and compare state-managed health care options, apply for coverage and complete their enrollment all on one convenient platform at kynect.ky.gov.
Compared with current federal exchange offerings, Kentuckians will benefit in 2022 from more health care insurance providers and the opportunity to tailor coverage to address their unique needs. The change is expected to save Kentuckians at least $15 million a year.
People who buy commercial health plans through the federal site pay a surcharge on premiums, which will not continue with the state-based marketplace. Savings will be passed on to Kentuckians who buy health coverage through the marketplace. Restoring the portal and other kynect services will help Kentuckians get better access to local support throughout the application process.
- Beginning Oct. 15, 2021, at kynect.ky.gov, Kentuckians will be able to browse plans and explore benefits that take effect Jan. 1, 2022.
- Enrollment for 2022 begins Nov. 1, 2021, and closes Jan. 15, 2022.
The commonwealth will receive $650,000 in American Rescue Plan Act grant funding from CMS to support the reopening of kynect. Kentuckians will once again have access to all the benefits of the original state-based kynect, launched in 2013, including the ability to determine eligibility for Medicaid or a subsidy to help offset their out-of-pocket premium costs.
In addition to Anthem’s statewide coverage and CareSource, which offers plans in 100 counties, consumers can shop for plans available in select counties from two new health insurers; Ambetter from WellCare of Kentucky and Passport Health Plan by Molina.
Also new in January 2022, Kentuckians will be able to purchase a vision plan through kynect. VSP Individual Vision Plans will offer enrollees a comprehensive eye exam from an in-network doctor, an eye frame allowance, and lens enhancements, such as progressives.
Kentucky’s original, award-winning state-based health benefit exchange helped Kentucky achieve the biggest drop in the uninsured rate in the nation from 2013-2014. The popular, state-based marketplace was dismantled in 2016 under the previous administration, inconveniencing thousands of Kentuckians as they were forced to apply for coverage on the federal health care exchange, losing the local, community-based and in-person guidance that had been a signature of kynect’s success. As a result, many Kentuckians lost health care coverage.
To learn more visit kynect.ky.gov.
Click here for more Kentucky business news.