A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Medicaid dental and vision cuts worry patients, healthcare providers; Democrats demand answers

Kentucky is in the third week without dental, vision or non-emergency transportation benefits for 460,000 Kentucky adults on Medicaid, and Democratic lawmakers, health advocates and dentists are continuing to voice their concerns, prompting the state health cabinet to respond online, including a Facebook video that cites “misinformation that is circulating in the media.” The 460,000 who...

State Medicaid work requirements begin July 1; Northern Ky. counties first to implement changes

Kentucky’s new work requirements for “able-bodied” Medicaid recipients will be phased in slowly, with the three main Northern Kentucky counties leading the way. Campbell County will be the first to instigate the new “community engagement” requirements on July 1, followed by Boone County on Aug. 1 and Kenton County on Sept. 1. After that, large groups of counties are to...

Coalition for Smoke-Free Tomorrow says $1 tax will actually reduce impact of smoking on health

A Coalition of more than 150 organizations is calling on the Kentucky legislature to help reduce smoking rates among low-income and other vulnerable populations by raising the excise tax on cigarettes by at least $1 per pack. The Coalition for a Smoke-Free Tomorrow says an increase of at least $1 is necessary to reduce the impact of smoking on Kentuckians’ health and the economy; much less,...

Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky marks significant increase in funding to curb tobacco use in 2017

The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky invested more than $361,000 on work to reduce both tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke in 2017. This commitment represented a significant expansion of the Foundation’s annual budget focused on tobacco-use reduction over past years. Even so, the Foundation continued several research projects as well as its support of grantees working on a variety...

Coalition for a Smoke-Free Kentucky releases Infographic illustrating high cost of smoking

Kentucky spends $1.92 billion every year on health care costs related to smoking, according to a new infographic released by the Coalition for a Smoke-Free Tomorrow. The infographic makes the case for raising the state’s current tax on cigarettes by at least $1 per pack, which would raise $266.2 million a year in revenue that the Commonwealth could use for health care, pensions or other needs. Created...

Even if automatically re-enrolled, check out your healthcare options; open enrollment ends Dec. 15

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News This is the first year that more than 80,000 Kentuckians with a 2017 health insurance plan on the federal exchange will be automatically re-enrolled in a 2018 marketplace plan. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t check out other options before open enrollment ends Dec. 15. “People should not automatically assume that they are going to get re-enrolled...

Kentucky shows sharp improvement in number of low-income uninsured, study shows

Kentucky had the largest drop in low-income, working-age people without health insurance, and the biggest decline in adults who passed up medical care due to cost, after the state embraced the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Those two findings were the Kentucky highlights of the latest Commonwealth Fund report on the impacts of the 2010 health-reform law, released last week. The report...

Kentucky Voices for Health hosting eight community forums to discuss proposed Medicaid changes

Kentucky Voices for Health will host eight community forums across the state to discuss Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed changes to the state’s Medicaid program during the 30-day federal comment period, which ends Oct. 8. Each event will feature a brief presentation about the proposed changes, allow time for questions and will provide an opportunity for attendees to discuss how the proposed changes...

Commentary: #KeepKYCovered coalition speaks out about risks to well-being of Bevin health proposal

Governor Bevin’s proposed Medicaid waiver (Kentucky HEALTH) includes a number of harmful changes that will impact the health and economic wellbeing of hardworking, low-income Kentuckians, families and our most vulnerable citizens across the Commonwealth. Today, #KeepKYCovered brings together Medicaid recipients, health advocates, faith leaders, and providers to speak about the impact these changes...

Kynectors, health advocates ask state to maintain current staffing, resource levels in new system

As the administration of Gov. Matt Bevin works toward dismantling Kynect, the state’s health insurance exchange, health advocates say they worry that the transition is going too quickly to be smooth, risking a loss of coverage for some Kentuckians. Kentucky Voices for Health, a coalition of groups supporting health-care reform, said that the administration needs to “keep, hire and train...