(LOUISVILLE, Ky – November 21, 2016) Medicaid covered almost 636,000 adult Kentuckians ages 19 to 64 in the second quarter of this year, according to a report released by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky today. Nearly 78 percent, or 493,199 people, obtained coverage under expanded Medicaid eligibility enabled by the Affordable Care Act, the report said. And almost half of the newly covered Kentuckians were young adults ages 19 to 34.
“Medicaid expansion was most important for younger Kentucky adults,” said Ben Chandler, president and CEO of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. “This tends to be the healthiest population but, if they lose insurance, they’re not likely to take advantage of the preventive care that will help keep them healthier throughout their lives. Moving forward, then, the goal has to be keeping them insured.”
The findings are in the latest report from an ongoing study of the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in Kentucky, commissioned by the Foundation in 2015. Of the 635,747 Kentuckians covered by traditional and expanded Medicaid as of June 30, 2016, 493,199 comprised the expansion population and 142,548 were covered by traditional Medicaid, the report said.
Of the Medicaid expansion adult population, 46.5 percent ranged in age from 19 to 34. That age range also comprised the largest group for traditional Medicaid.
The report also shows that expansion of Medicaid significantly boosted coverage across the Commonwealth, including in both the urban population centers of Lexington and Louisville, as well as the more rural regions of Western, Eastern and Northern Kentucky. In addition, the distribution of Medicaid expansion enrollment across Kentucky remains virtually unchanged from the third quarter of 2015 (third quarter 2015 numbers are reported here, see page 3).
A copy of the new report, the 6th quarterly snapshot of the Study of the Impact of the ACA Implementation in Kentucky, is available here.
About the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky
Since the Foundation opened its doors in 2001, it has invested more than $26 million in health policy research and pilot project grants across the Commonwealth. Funded by an endowment, the mission of the Foundation is to address the unmet health care needs of Kentuckians by developing and influencing health policy, improving access to care, reducing health risks and disparities, and promoting health equity. Follow the Foundation on Twitter and on Facebook, or visit our website at www.healthy-ky.org.
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Bonnie J. Hackbarth