A Kentucky HEALTH Stakeholder Advisory Forum will be 1 p.m. Thursday at the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky in the Lydon area. | Archived photo by Darla Carter

Residents in and near Louisville have a rare opportunity to attend a Kentucky HEALTH forum in Jefferson County Thursday to learn more about the state’s planned overhaul of Medicaid.

The state will hold a Stakeholder Advisory Forum at 1 p.m. Thursday, March 7, in the Lyndon area, less than a month before Kentucky HEALTH is officially set to start.

The event, which is part of a monthly series that moves around the state, will be held at the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, which partners with Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration on Kentucky HEALTH. The organization is located at 1640 Lyndon Farm Ct, No. 100.

Kentucky HEALTH, which is being contested in federal court, officially kicks off April 1, but some of it won’t start until later in the year, the state recently announced.

For example, phasing in of the most contentious feature — a work or “community engagement” requirement — isn’t scheduled to begin until July. As part of that, certain Medicaid recipients will have to complete and report 80 hours a month of work or “community engagement,” such as job training or volunteering.

The program, which was approved again by the Trump administration in November, also includes a My Rewards account for accruing virtual dollars to get services, such as routine dental and vision services, instead of receiving that coverage automatically.

Most Kentucky HEALTH participants will have to pay monthly premiums, but the state recently announced that it wouldn’t be collecting them during the first month.

According to the latest Kentucky HEALTH Pulse newsletter, Medicaid recipients who are eligible for Kentucky HEALTH will begin receiving notices March 21 letting them know which parts are applicable to them. The notices will be sent through the mail and email.

The program could get sidelined, however, by a lawsuit filed by more than a dozen Medicaid recipients, who say Kentucky HEALTH will harm some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens, namely adults who gained coverage through Medicaid expansion, and that the Trump administration’s approval of the program constitutes an abuse of authority. Oral arguments are set for March 14.

 

Darla Carter

Darla Carter

Darla Carter is a hometown girl who recently joined the staff of Insider Louisville to mostly cover health. She previously served as a longtime health and fitness writer for The Courier-Journal, where she also worked for the Metro, Neighborhoods and Features departments. Prior to that, the award-winning journalist wrote for newspapers elsewhere in Kentucky and Tennessee, covering a range of topics, from education to courts. She's a graduate of Western Kentucky University, where she studied journalism and philosophy, and is the proud mom of two young children.