WAVE 3 News Editorial - September 15, 2016: Medicaid Cost

WAVE 3 News Editorial - September 15, 2016: Medicaid Cost

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - There are 220 watch counties nationwide by the Center for Disease Control and 54 of them are in Kentucky - a quarter of all on the list.

There are 8,000 children in Kentucky waiting for a foster home.

Every day in Kentucky, $30 million is spent for Medicaid coverage, and that is expected to increase significantly in the next two years.

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The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services is responsible for all of these areas - and more - offering services for physical and mental health, and protection and assistance for people of all ages - touching the life of nearly every Kentuckian.

Medicaid is projected to consume every new General Fund dollar coming into the Commonwealth for the next two years and it already consumes 35% of the entire budget and 83% of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services budget.

Clearly, to continue to offer current services, adjustments need to be made. Making the long-term financing of Medicaid sustainable must be the starting point. Otherwise, all other services are at risk, as well as the traditional Medicaid program.

The current plan pending federal government approval - KentuckyHealth, may be the answer, or something else not yet on the drawing board may be, but doing nothing will be a disaster.

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