In an executive order signed Friday, Bevin said he is directing the Health and Family Services Cabinet to terminate expanded Medicaid if any part of his Medicaid waiver -- approved last week by the federal government -- is successfully challenged in court and he can't get an unfavorable final judgment overturned on appeal.
Several national health advocacy groups have said they will sue the first state to implement a so-called "Medicaid 1115" waiver if that waiver either reduces the scope of health coverage or involuntarily cuts people from the program.
Bevin's threat "will have no impact on litigation whatsoever, full stop," said
"It's not my place or policy to get into a back-and-forth with the governor of a state," Cuello said. "So let me just ask a question instead. Is the governor of
Bevin's order declares his threat to be necessary because "the commonwealth has invested significant resources in preparing for the implementation" of the waiver, and "any delay in the implementation of the waiver due to judicial action will cause harm to the commonwealth and will prevent Medicaid beneficiaries from realizing the benefits under the waiver."
Traditionally, Medicaid covers the poor and disabled. Under former Democratic Gov.
Bevin, a Republican, said Friday that the changes he expects to impose starting
"There is dignity associated with earning the value of something that you receive," Bevin said at the time. "The vast majority of men and women, able-bodied men and women ... they want the dignity associated with being able to earn and have engagement."
The changes also require people to pay premiums of up to
The majority of adult Kentuckians enrolled in expanded Medicaid already work, but they often hold low-wage jobs that don't offer health insurance or other benefits, according to the
For critics of Bevin's Medicaid waiver, one concern is that many of these low-income workers don't have time to keep filing government paperwork so they can officially prove where, when and how they're employed. Such lapses could cost them.
"Failing to fill out your forms properly will cause people to get locked out of Medicaid for six months at a time," said
"I think with this threat today,
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