"I am excited by the fact that Kentucky will now lead the nation", Bevin said at a news conference at the Capitol Rotunda.
In its guidance to states, CMS said they should consider how some communities have high unemployment rates and whether enrollees need to care for young children and elderly families. Because of the added administrative costs, the waivers that states have filed to create work requirements generally, even as they reduce the number of people in the program. Democrats, health providers and patient groups say the measure adds another stumbling block for people to keep their coverage. "Overall, CMS believes that Kentucky HEALTH [Helping to Engage and Achieve Long Term Health] has been created to empower individuals to improve their health and well-being". About 60 percent of the Medicaid recipients whom the federal government considers to be able-bodied adults are already working, according to the.
Many people insured through Medicaid are working low-income jobs with unpredictable and irregular hours. If they don't comply, they could qualify for coverage for only three months in every three-year period.
People who are enrolled because they make under $12,060 a year for a one-person family, but are not disabled will have to work, volunteer, take education classes or be in job training for at least 80 hours a month.
The opened the doors Thursday for states to for people who get Medicaid, a move that is likely to be a catastrophe for some of the most vulnerable Americans, particularly those struggling with opioid addiction.
The state argued in the application submitted by Gov. Eric Holcomb that increasing participation in the state's Gateway to Work program will encourage Medicaid recipients to be self-sufficient and help them transition to getting their insurance through an employer.
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The revisions would cut dental and vision coverage for many adults, although they can regain it by completing health-related activities, such as taking a disease management class or volunteering. It allowed states to provide coverage to anyone earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level (about $16,600 for an individual). Typically, waivers have allowed states to expand coverage to new populations or test out ways of delivering benefits to improve enrollees' health and save money. And when someone gets sick, the last thing she needs to worry about is whether she'll also lose her health coverage for not working. It also states explicitly that states can't get federal Medicaid money for services like childcare and transportation that people might need to get back to work.
Under Kentucky HEALTH, enrollees will make a monthly payment ranging from $1 to $15 depending on income.
The Kentucky Medicaid changes generally mimic those of neighboring IN, which altered its program IN 2015 under then-Gov.
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Bevin noted in a news conference Friday that Kentucky's is the first waiver with a community engagement requirement approved.
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services previous year sought federal Medicaid officials' permission to require non-disabled, low-income adults enrolled in Medicaid to work as a condition of receiving coverage.
The Trump Administration's proposal to institute work requirements for Medicaid - government health insurance for the poor - is unlikely to affect Pennsylvania soon. The Center for Law and Social Policy says that would be both a shift of resources away from needed health care while still not being enough for anything "but an ineffective, low-touch job search program that primarily serves as an additional hoop for beneficiaries to jump through".
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Update: This story was updated on January 12 to add information from the governor and more details on the Kentucky waiver once they were released.