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Health and Family Services Cabinet
Medicaid Commissioner Presents KyHealth Choices Proposal at National Conference

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, November 09, 2005  
Contact Information:  Gwenda Bond or Vikki Franklin (502)564-6786  


Medicaid Commissioner Presents KyHealth Choices Proposal at National Conference
Waiver Will Provide Needed Flexibility to Medicaid

(Nov. 9, 2005) Medicaid Commissioner Shannon R. Turner presented the KyHealth Choices waiver proposal at the annual meeting of the National Association of State Medicaid Directors (NASMD) today in Arlington, Va.


"I’m pleased to have this opportunity to share the details of our waiver proposal with other state Medicaid directors,” said Turner. “In developing our waiver proposal, we drew from best practices in other states and the private sector to determine how we can operate the program more efficiently while continuing to provide quality care for Medicaid members now and in the future."


 The presentation was part of a panel on state reform initiatives made up of the Medicaid directors from Kentucky, Florida and South Carolina.


 The Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) submitted the KyHealth Choices waiver proposal to the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) last week. DMS partnered with consumers, family members, advocacy organizations and providers to develop a waiver proposal that would stretch resources to most appropriately meet the needs of members and encourage personal responsibility for health care. The major components of the KyHealth Choices program are: benefit packages; cost sharing and service limitations;?integrated care between physical and behavioral health services; disease management programs; and Get Healthy accounts.


KyHealth Choices will provide health care coverage for Medicaid members throughout the state, except those currently being served by Passport and ventilator-dependent individuals served under an existing waiver. Current waivers for acquired brain injury, supports for community living and home and community based services will be folded into KyHealth Choices. Implementation is slated to begin in January, contingent on the federal government’s approval.


The NASMD is a bipartisan, professional, nonprofit organization of representatives of state Medicaid agencies (including the District of Columbia and the territories). Since 1979, NASMD has been affiliated with the American Public Human Services Association. The primary purposes of NASMD are: to serve as a focal point of communication between the states and the federal government, and to provide an information network among the states on issues pertinent to the Medicaid program. 


A draft of the waiver proposal can be viewed at the Medicaid home page: http://www.chfs.ky.gov/dms

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Last Updated 11/9/2005