Kentucky Medicaid

WKMS/Rob Canning

Gov. Steve Beshear on Friday defended Kentucky’s health care exchange and Medicaid expansion, both of which are facing drastic reforms by his incoming successor.

J. Tyler Franklin, Louisville Public Media

Governor-elect Matt Bevin has plans to scale back Kentucky’s Medicaid expansion, under which more than 400,000 residents have gained coverage.

And while he’s been mum on details so far, one thing is certain: He will have to seek federal approval to change the program.

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  Many of the Kentuckians enrolled in Medicaid work in service sector jobs such as sales, food service and construction, according to a new study.

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An increase in Medicaid services and a decline in the private insurance market in rural Kentucky has hit rural hospitals hard, according to State Auditor Adam Edelen.

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Nearly a quarter of Kentucky’s population is now covered by Medicaid, thanks in part to the state’s embrace of the Affordable Care Act. While fully funded by the federal government for the first three years, the state will have to start bearing a small share of the burden in 2017.

Kentucky children who receive Medicaid are prescribed medications to treat mental illness and behavioral issues at double the rate of the national average, according to research from the Child and Adolescent Health Research Design and Support Unit at the University of Louisville.

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Multiple states, including Kentucky, have reached a $31 million settlement with drug manufacturer Organon following allegations of several infractions.

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Gov. Steve Beshear says the Medicaid managed care system is running smoothly, with payments being processed quickly and fewer complaints.

Beshear said Thursday that managed care, now in its second year statewide, is saving tax dollars while also helping to improve the health of Medicaid recipients by emphasizing prevention and wellness.

By better communication of electronic health records, state officials hope to lower traffic at emergency rooms and save millions of dollars.  The initiative is aimed at patients known as ‘super utilizers.’

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Nearly 7,000 Kentuckians and families now have affordable health insurance thanks to the state’s online health exchange Kynect. 

The Governor’s office reports that more than 175,000 people have clicked on the web site since its launch October 1st and more than 3.1 million webpages have been visited.

More than 155,000 people conducted prescreenings to determine qualifications for subsidies, discounts or programs like Medicaid. More than 22,000 applications for health care coverage have been started and nearly 15,000 have been completed.  The report also states that 209 small businesses have started applications to provide health insurance for employees.  

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