Report Casts Doubt On Kentucky's Readiness To Expand Medicaid

Jul 31, 2013

FRANKFORT, Ky. - Auditor Adam Edelen is expressing concerns about the Kentucky’s readiness to extend Medicaid coverage to 300,000 more Kentuckians next year. A review of the state’s managed care system shows an 8 percent drop since 2011 in Medicaid providers.

Edelen first announced the creation of a Medicaid Accountability and Transparency Unit in response to widespread complaints about the state’s transition to managed care in February of 2012.

Now, a report by Edelen’s office shows rural hospitals are struggling to make ends meet as their backlog of outstanding Medicaid claims has increased – with one hospital reporting a nearly 300 percent jump since the switch to managed care. A number of hospitals have also stopped taking Medicaid patients.

While the report did find that 100 percent of Medicaid patients have access to hospitals and primary care providers, contractual requirements of the MCOs, such as one that measures distance to facilities in a straight line rather than actual miles driven, are raising concerns that access could be affected.

Medicaid provides health care to roughly 787,000 low-income Kentuckians.