FRANKFORT, Ky. (Sept. 23, 2016) — Gov. Matt Bevin today thanked members of the Commonwealth of Kentucky’s Congressional Delegation for signing a joint letter sent to Health and Human Services Sec. Sylvia Burwell, asking her for an expedited approval of Kentucky’s Section 1115 demonstration waiver known as Kentucky HEALTH (Helping to Engage and Achieve Long Term Health).
The signees of the letter are: Sen. Mitch McConnell, Sen. Rand Paul, Congressman Brett Guthrie, Congressman Hal Rogers, Congressman Andy Barr and Congressman Thomas Massie.
“I am grateful that our representatives in Washington are fighting as hard as we are to make sure we have a financially sustainable healthcare plan for low-income Kentuckians,” said Gov. Bevin. “Kentucky HEALTH will enable the Commonwealth to deliver better health outcomes and greater self-sufficiency. Kentuckians deserve nothing less.”
From the letter:
“Kentucky HEALTH is a transformational and modernized program focused on participants and taxpayers alike. In addition to ensuring the long-term fiscal sustainability of the Medicaid program, Kentucky HEALTH encourages beneficiaries to be active members of their communities. The able-bodied members are incentivized to improve their health and overall well-being through community engagement activities, job training opportunities, and participation in public health classes. Kentucky HEALTH also encourages and incentivizes education for those who want to pursue a GED while also recognizing and rewarding care taking responsibilities — both of which were incorporated in response to public comments.”
Gov. Bevin submitted the waiver application on Aug. 24, 2016 and HHS confirmed the application was complete on Sept. 8, 2016.
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 addition $1.2 billion in new state spending for fiscal years 2017 through 2021 necessary for the program. Kentucky HEALTH seeks to improve health outcomes while addressing the long term viability of the Medicaid program.