Federal Judge To Hear Kentucky Medicaid Case

Jun 12, 2018

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin's Medicaid plan is being challenged in court.
Credit Kentucky.com

A federal judge could decide later this week if Kentucky can move forward with changes to its Medicaid program. Governor Matt Bevin’s administration received a waiver from the federal government to require able-bodied adults to work or volunteer to maintain their Medicaid coverage. Enrollees would also pay small premiums and face lockout periods for failing to renew their benefits on time. Kentucky saw one of the country’s largest drops in the number of uninsured 

people following the 2014 Medicaid expansion allowed under the Affordable Care Act. The Bevin administration has estimated there will be 95,000 people who lose 
Medicaid coverage over the next five years. Emily Beauregard  heads Kentucky Voices for Health.

"If we've learned anything from the past four years of Kentucky's Medicaid expansion, it's that people are able to engage in their health care, keep a job, and be better parents exactly because they're covered in the first place."

A group of 16 Kentucky Medicaid enrollees is suing Bevin and the federal government over the legality of the waiver. A U.S. District Court Judge will hear arguments in that case on Friday in Washington, DC. Governor Bevin has filed a counter lawsuit in federal court in Frankfort. The outcome of those rulings could delay the waiver’s implementation. The requirements are scheduled to take effect on July 1 on a county-by-county basis starting in northern Kentucky.